SMOKE BREAK #1125 | On The History Of Melancholy & Why It Might Be Good For Us

Courtney Stevens digs into the history of how societies have viewed sadness and how melancholy can actually be construed as a positive, evolutionary advantage in this recent TED-Ed animation.


SCOUT LIST | Ten Things That You Should Absolutely Do Between Now And Next Week

September 30, 2014 


by Michelle Sproule | The main objective of this website is to scout out and promote the things that make Vancouver such a sweet place to be. We do this with an emphasis on the city’s independent spirit to foster a sense of connectedness within and between our communities, and to introduce our readers to the people who grow and cook our food, play the raddest tunes in our better venues, create our most interesting art, and design everything from what we wear to the spaces we inhabit. The Scout List is our carefully considered, first rate agenda of super awesome things that we’re either doing, wishing that we could do, or conspiring to do this week. You can also check it out in the Globe & Mail, from our calendar to theirs…and yours!

GIG | Chan Marshall (aka “Cat Power”) is bringing her unique and bluesy, soulful, folkish, punk and sometimes electronica sound to the Vogue Theatre this Thursday night.
Thu, Oct 2 | 9:30 pm | Vogue Theatre (918 Granville St.) | $38.50 | DETAILS 

PEROGIES | Nothing says Fall like extra carbs, right? Hustle over to the Holy Trinity Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral off Main St. and load your plate up with old-school Ukrainian perogies handmade by church volunteers. A “regular dinner” consisting of 6 perogies, 2 cabbage rolls, sauerkraut or salad and Ukrainian sausage costs just $12. The vegetarian version comes with 6 perigees, 3 cabbage rolls and sauerkraut. If you’re looking for something a little lighter, borscht served with rye bread is only $4.50.
Fri, Oct 3 | 5-8pm | Holy Trinity Ukrainian Cathedral (154 E 10) | $3.50 – $15 | DETAILS

DRAMA | Why not make your way out to UBC’s Frederic Wood Theatre for a spot of Shakespeare this weekend? The UBC Department of Theatre & Film presents the Twelfth Night. Cross-dressing, unrequited love, mischief, and director Stephen Heatley’s adaptation to modern day New Orleans during Mardi-Gras guarantees a fine night out.
Now to Oct. 11 | 7:30pm | Frederic Wood Theatre (6354 Crescent Rd., UBC) $24.50 | DETAILS

INDULGE | Stuff your face with artisanal breads, scones, cookies and cakes at the Bakers’ Market this weekend. Expect all manner of treats from macaroons and madeleines to cupcakes, fresh bread, and pies – we’re guessing there will be a respectable amount of pumpkin flavoured items and even a few hints of gingerbread on the scene. Lots of gluten-free and vegan options…the whole shebang. Remember to take your own containers and bags!
Sat, Oct 4 | 11am–3pm | Moberly Arts & Cultural Centre (7646 Prince Albert) | DETAILS

BOOKS | The Vancouver Antiquarian Book Fair sets up shop at UBC Robson Square this weekend. Peruse rare antiquarian books, collectible ephemera, old maps and unique prints – all with that awesome ‘old book’ smell. Expect shelves and tables full of beautifully bound, meticulously cared for and clearly respected books. If you’re a book wonk, this is also a fine place for conversation with knowledgeable dealers.
Oct 4 + 5 | Sat 11am-4pm; Sun 11am-4pm | UBC Robson Sq, 800 Robson | $8 | DETAILS

OKTOBERFEST | The best thing about October? Better than pumpkin pie and falling leaves and the beginning of hockey season? Beer. In You’re entitled and encouraged – even expected – to guzzle German pints is celebration of Oktoberfest. If you’re looking for somewhere to get in to the spirit, The Alpen Club does it right. From ‘Ohhmpah pah, classic German Schlager Songs’ to Bavarian Buffet and lounge, the club’s slogan says it best: “Real Oktoberfest by Real Germans.”
Oct 4 & 5 | Doors at 7:30pm | Vancouver Alpen Club (4875 Victoria) | $30/$80 | DETAILS

EAT | Love good street food? Good news: The Hawker’s Market goes down this Saturday night and, as always, street food will be the main draw of the evening. In addition to a fine line-up of vendors cooking up fantastic food there will also be drinks (your ticket comes with a 33 Acres Beer), music (loud and performed by BESTiE), and a large crowd of cool people looking to have a good time. Tickets are 10 beans when you grab them in advance and $15 at the door.
Sat, Oct 4 | 4pm-late | 188 Kingsway | $10/15 (includes a beer) | DETAILS

WATCH | The Vancouver International Film Festival is on and it’s big. How big? Over 350 films big. That’s almost overwhelming, right?  Narrow things down by browsing by series (films are classified into a number of series such as 3D, Cinema of Our Time, BC Spotlight, Nonfiction and Special Presentations) as well as by genre and venue. Still, 350 films? That’s a lot to take in. Have a look at Scout’s  ”Nine Movies You Need To Catch At VIFF“.
Now – Oct. 10 | Various Times and Locations | DETAILS

WATER’S EDGE | The Georgia Strait Alliance is an organization focused on protecting and raising awareness about the marine environment in and around the whole Strait of Georgia. In an effort to put Vancouverites in touch with the beauty and importance of the shoreline, the Alliance is hosting a city wide day of free activities that, on the water or off. Expect boat tours, canoe and kayaking, water themed art workshops, free admission to the Maritime Museum – you can even slip your hand into a Vancouver Aquarium’s mobile touch tank to feel the slimy skin of a sea cucumber. For a full list of events visit
Sun, Oct 5 | 10am–5pm | Various times and locations | FREE | DETAILS

NATURE | Put those Youtube videos of rabid bats out of your head! They’re good to have in the city. They eat bugs (like mosquitos and crop killing insects), help to pollinate and disperse seeds, and they produce an amazing poop called guano that is great for your garden. Yay, bats! Head to UBC Farm this weekend for a bit of bat love. The South Coast Bat Action Team will be on site to teach you how to build a bat house and they feed you tons of information that will dispel the creepy blood-sucking stereotype. This workshop is kid-friendly and super cool.
Fri, Oct 3 (2-5pm) + Oct 4 (5-8pm) | UBC Farm (6182 South Campus Rd) | DETAILS

late-may-2009-169Michelle Sproule grew up in Kitsilano and attended University in Australia and the University of Victoria before receiving her graduate degree in Library Sciences from The University of Toronto. She lives in beautiful Strathcona and enjoys wandering aimlessly through the city’s streets with her best friend – a beat up, sticky, grimy (but faithful) camera.

DIG IT | Getting Lost Inside The Elizabethan Hedge Labyrinth Out At VanDusen Gardens

September 30, 2014 


by Stevie Wilson | Lauded as one of Vancouver’s most popular tourist attractions, the VanDusen Gardens is a beautiful spot catering to families and flora fanatics. Opened to the public in 1975, the expansive gardens sit on Shaughnessy land that once belonged to the CPR Railway and previously operated as the Shaughnessy Golf Course. The grounds were named for lumber industrialist Whitford Julian VanDusen , a founding member of the Vancouver Foundation and a major funder of the site. The intricate gardens also include one very special feature: an Elizabethan hedge maze.

The maze is said to be one of only six of its kind in North America, and although some might say it’s best enjoyed by children, I’d have to politely disagree (I’m not ashamed to admit that I’ve gotten lost in there before). Justice, Webb & Vincent Landscape Architects, the garden’s design team, featured original members of the first Vancouver firm to specialize in landscape architecture. Their multicursal labyrinth is modelled after the great English designs of the late 16th century and is comprised of 3,000 pyramidal cedars (Thuja occidentalis ‘Fastigiata’) that were planted in 1981. Bonus: an annual Easter egg hunt is held inside the maze each year.


TEA & TWO SLICES | On Harper’s Good Side And Swearing Oaths To The Gods Of Hockey

September 29, 2014 


by Sean Orr | You say “Potato”, I say “Israel”: Unreal exchange in House of Commons over Canada’s involvement in Iraq. You know you’re in trouble when Global TV uses the word “unreal” to describe your parliament. Nevertheless, if there was justice in the world, NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair would get every vote possible for his beatdown of Conservative MP Paul Calandra. Macleans goes further: “They call it Question Period, not Fundamentals of Human Dignity Period…”

Update: Calandra is sorry. Really, really sorry.

The mask of Janus: Critics question use of official photographers to capture Harper’s good side. Man, a 360 degree, Matrix-style drone helicopter couldn’t capture Harper’s good side.

Potential new ex-Premier: Premier proposes name change for Temporary Foreign Worker program. “So maybe if they are overhauling the program they can change the name from temporary foreign worker to potential new Canadian…” If you work hard, swear allegiance on a stack of maple leaves, worship your new god Hockey, eat at Tim Hortons every single day, and aren’t a terrorist (that’s a big one), then maybe you can become one of us.

Malcolm X in the Middle: Vancouver Sun’s Jordan Subban photo caption sparks outrage. “Dark Guy in the Middle” sounds like a quirky premise for a sitcom. Perhaps they just meant spiritually dark and this is all just a misunderstanding…

Speaking of outrage: The new, tiresome culture of outrage. This article makes me more outraged than, say, knowing that Missouri cops are wearing ‘I am Darren Wilson’ bracelets.

City trying to close Oppenheimer Park tent city, move homeless to upscale Vancouver neighbourhood. What neighbourhood isn’t upscale compared to the DTES? “You always have to worry about tipping the balance and I think we’re getting close to tipping that balance (in False Creek)” – George Affleck (seemingly unaware that this is the exact argument used by anti-gentrification protesters).

The rich should form a counter-protest and buy up a bunch of housing and just leave them empty. Oh, wait…Vancouver’s empty, run-down million-dollar homes receiving global attention, local anger. It would suck if someone were to, oh, I dunno…leave the water running.

Meanwhile, Judge dismisses challenge of Vancouver’s street vending bylaw. So a rich person can leave an entire house empty if they are going to sell it but a poor person can’t have a garage sale on the street. Sounds about right.

UnfairBnb: Airbnb to begin collecting San Fran hotel tax. In Vancouver, only the Green Party has added an AirBnb tax to their platform. Vancouver hotels currently pay 16.5% tax; AirBnb pays 0%.

Bonus: I-don’t-know-how-I-missed-it-of-the-month.

VICTORY GARDENS | On Making Summer Last A Little Longer By Preserving Peppers

September 24, 2014 


by Lisa Giroday, Sandra Lopuch and Sam Philips | Summer was glorious. We have had bumper crops of cucumbers, tomatoes, basil, and, one of our favourite crops, peppers! Now that it’s late September (and evidently so), it’s important to consider ways to preserve such bounty, whether that be filling up the freezer, jarring jams, making pestos, fermenting pickles, or drying.

If you have pepper plants, you may not know what to do with your crop. A little goes a long way with peppers in the culinary department, after all. If you don’t grow peppers, we suggest that you get a bunch of peppers from the farmer’s market to preserve and have local pepper hotness over the winter months. If you’re not pickling your hot peppers, or want to try a couple of different preservation methods, consider drying them. If you don’t have a dehydrator, don’t fret! You can sun dry them or even dry them in the oven. Find out how after the jump… Read more

TEA & TWO SLICES | On Sore Lululosers And Clearing Oppenheimer Park’s Tent City

September 23, 2014 


by Sean Orr | Go for that “lived-in” look: Poll: Should Vancouver tax owners of vacant condos? Yes, but how long until professional companies pop up to just make it look like someone actually is living in your condo? Full disclosure: I’ve been doing that for 7 years in my parent’s condo and nobody suspects a thing…

The Province newspaper asked its famously informed subscribers if the police should “clear out the tent city homeless protesters in Oppenheimer Park”. One response really captured the readergeist: “Absolutely! 99.9% of the citizens of Vancouver have jobs, work hard and pay for their accommodation [...] I have no expectation that the taxpayers should pay my way. But then, what should we expect from Mayor Moonbeam and his Merry Band of Loonies?” Hmm, perhaps you could expect a more accurate estimation of the city’s current unemployment rate? For the record, currently 5.8% of Vancouverites are jobless, not 0.1%. That’s over 25,000 people. Not even Stanley Park would have enough room to accommodate that many tents.

A towering argument: Development taken to new level by Vision Vancouver. “So is the ‘Greenest City’ branding more like a Potemkin Village initiative, leading Gregor Robertson’s party to become the default choice of urban hipsters and environmentally-conscious boomers alike”? Yes, but can we call it facadism, please?

Related: ONNI Developer Destroying Green Space in East Vancouver – with photos.

Who would have thought capitalism would be so damn predatory? Rich get richer, and Canadian companies want their business. I imagine it looks something like this: YOU! LOOK AT ME!

Geritocracy: Age, not gender, is the new income divide in Canada, study finds. And with that, I give you the Baby Boomer Death Counter. You’re welcome.

Vancouver Coolhunters by VFW. “Vancouver Fashion Week had the honour of meeting with eight incredible people who have emblazoned the local fashion scene for years”. Yeah, I’m sure they’re all very nice and creative people, but how the fuck do you emblazon a local fashion scene?

Related: I dressed like an idiot at London Fashion Week to see how easy it is to get street snapped.

Nothing was the Same: Why Tanya Tagaq is the most wonderfully weird Polaris winner of all. Thanks for not picking the softest rapper in the game.

And speaking of weird: Briton killed in France took identity of dead Canadian rockstar. “Gone gone gone, he be gone so long” – Dave Olson.

Lululemon founder Chip Wilson covers home’s graffiti seawall mural with message critical of city. Oh, give me a break. Being a spoiled brat because you didn’t get a permit for your mural doesn’t mean the city doesn’t support art. In all fairness, they probably don’t, but that’s not what is happening here, you big baby.

SCOUT LIST | 10 Things That You Should Absolutely Do Between Now & Next Week

September 23, 2014 


by Michelle Sproule | The main objective of this website is to scout out and promote the things that make Vancouver such a sweet place to be. We do this with an emphasis on the city’s independent spirit to foster a sense of connectedness within and between our communities, and to introduce our readers to the people who grow and cook our food, play the raddest tunes in our better venues, create our most interesting art, and design everything from what we wear to the spaces we inhabit. The Scout List is our carefully considered, first rate agenda of super awesome things that we’re either doing, wishing that we could do, or conspiring to do this week. You can also check it out in the Globe & Mail, from our calendar to theirs…and yours!

WATCH | The Vancouver International Film Festival is on and it’s big. How big? Over 350 films big. Almost overwhelming, right?  Narrow things down by browsing by series (films are classified into a number of series such as 3D, Cinema of Our Time, BC Spotlight, Nonfiction and Special Presentations) as well as by genre and venue. Still, 350 films? That’s a lot to take in. For a curated list – have a look at Scout’s “Nine Movies You Need To Catch At VIFF“.
Sept. 25 – Oct. 10 | Various Times and Locations | DETAILS

AMERICAN BEAUTY | The newest show at Jennifer Kostuik Gallery sounds amazing. American Beauty: The Opulent Pre-Depression Architecture of Detroit documents the once grand buildings of a bustling city that has fallen so far in to decay that it has officially been declared ‘hopelessly insolvent’. Hit the gallery on Thursday night to meet the artist (who will give a talk at 7pm) and to take a first hand peek at a series that shows the empty libraries, factories, theatres and stations that are abandoned and gathering dust. American Beauty continues until October 19th.
Thu, Sept 25 | 6-9pm | Jennifer Kostuik Gallery (1070 Homer St) | Free | DETAILS

SEED SAVING | If you grew a really good crop of tomatoes, some phenomenal peppers, or a bundle of kickass beans and you want to capture that magic again next year, now is the time to plan for it by saving some seeds. Need a little help getting started on technique? Pick up the basics at a quick ‘after work’ program at Strathcona BIA Resource Park (in the alley behind Axum Ethiopian Restaurant at Clark and Hastings).  This is some good knowledge to file in your brain, so don’t miss out.
Thu, Sept 25 | 6-7pm | SBIA Resource Park, 1279 E Hastings @ Clark | $5 | DETAILS

SURVIVE | Nikki Van Schyndal’s new book Becoming Wild chronicles her experience of surviving off the (often inhospitable) land of Echo Bay in the Broughton Archipelago (a cluster of islands near northern Vancouver Island) for 18 months. The survivalist and author speaks at Sitka on Thursday night as part of their new series of ‘Sitka Educational Evenings’ and, as organizers point out: “if you ever wanted to know how to start fires without matches, make medicines from West Coast plants or feed yourself in the coastal wilderness”, then this is the woman to school you. It sounds like an inspiring and humbling evening!
Thu, Sept 25 | 7-9pm | Sitka (1864 West 4th Ave) | DETAILS

WINDOW SEAT | Local photographer Jennilee Marigomen has a new book of photos out. Window Seat (a collection of Marigomen’s photos shot in Sayulita and San Francisco) launches at Make Gallery this Friday night with a show that is guaranteed to be composed and compelling. The really good news is that you won’t have to walk away lamenting the fact that you don’t have any of the artists work for yourself because you will be able pick up a copy of Window Seat (released in a limited edition of 500) for $30.
Fri, Sept 26th | 7-10pm | Make Gallery (257 East 7th) | DETAILS

THE COMEBACK | How many times have you been impressed by a work of art, concept, designer, or creative event and discovered the footnote “…a graduate of Emily Carr” in association with it? Many, right? Emily Carr University of Art and Design has a reputation for attracting, nurturing and releasing into the world a never-ending litter of fantastic talents. This weekend brings with it a perfect opportunity to appreciate a cross section of those talents at The Comeback – the annual gathering, show and sale of works made by ECUAD alumni. Don’t miss the panel discussion on Friday night (Danielle Krysa  -The Jealous Curator, photographer Tim Barber, and artist Ian Wallace speak) and the Sat/Sun art markets in the Concourse Gallery.
Sept 26 – 28 | Various times and locations at Emily Carr University | DETAILS

GIG | The Wooden Sky plays the Biltmore on Saturday night. The Toronto-based indie-rockers are in town to play some tunes from their new album Let’s Be Ready (it’s getting some really good reviews). As Exclaim Magazine puts it, the subtle strength of this new release “lies in its ability to brilliantly capture a wide, and oft ambiguous, spectrum of emotion: devastation, contentedness, hope and everything in between.”
Sat, Sept 27 | doors 8pm | Biltmore Cabaret (2755 Prince Ed) | $15 | DETAILS

CREATE | The organizers of ‘Late Nite Art’ have hooked up with The Burrard Arts Foundation (and BAF exhibiting artists James Knight and Steffen Quong) to bring you a night of creativity that coincides with the last night of Knight and Quong’s show KINTSUKUROI: Better To Be Broken. The evening kicks off with a talk by the artists, is followed by a civilized dinner, and finishes with a hands-on art party led by the artists. Culture, food and conversation for $40? That’s a pretty good deal. Get sorted with tickets here before they sell out.
Sat, Sept 27 | 7:30-10:30 pm | Burrard Arts Foundation (108 E. Broadway) | $40 |  DETAILS

HOT ONE INCH ACTION | Once a year Vancouver art enthusiasts Chris Bentzen and Jim Hoehnle curate a show of the works of 50 local artists called Hot One Inch Action. It’s a unique exhibition in which participating artists have been charged with creating art that must fit inside a 1″ button. Those attending the show can purchase a mixed pack of five buttons for $5, the catch being that the pack will be random and you may not score the item you were after. That’s when the fun begins and people start bargaining and trading.  There will be a limited supply of buttons – so arrive early to avoid disappointment.
Sat, Sept 27 | 7-11pm | Hot Art Wet City (2206 Main @ 6th) | DETAILS

KOERNER QUARTET | How about a little classical music on Sunday afternoon? Hustle down to the Koerner Recital Hall at the Vancouver Academy of Music to catch the Koerner Quartet. This performance (the first concert of their 2014/15 season) will begin with Webern’s Langsamer Satz, followed by Dvorák’s String Quartet No. 12 “American,” and ending with Shostakovich’s Piano Quintet in G Minor featuring VAM alumna pianist Grace Huang.  What a nice way to spend a late September Sunday afternoon!
Sun, Sept 28 | 2pm | Vancouver Academy of Music (1270 Chestnut St)| $15 | DETAILS

late-may-2009-169Michelle Sproule grew up in Kitsilano and attended University in Australia and the University of Victoria before receiving her graduate degree in Library Sciences from The University of Toronto. She lives in beautiful Strathcona and enjoys wandering aimlessly through the city’s streets with her best friend – a beat up, sticky, grimy (but faithful) camera.

TEA & TWO SLICES | On Joint Agreements & Free Bartenders Serving Tainted Alcohol

September 18, 2014 


by Sean Orr | “Rocks out” should be in quotation marks: Stephen Harper rocks out at Calgary nightclub. “Taking care of business and working overtime at your second part time minimum wage job with no benefits that you need to feed your family because of Canada’s deep and persistent income inequality, work out!”

I wonder if the above show sold out like how Harper just sold out the country: Harper sell out to China will be locked in.

Also, is it just me or does he seem a little stiff these days? Perhaps he could use a visit to everyone’s favourite dominatrix: Dominatrix expelled from Senate hearing after mentioning ‘proof on politicians’. For a second I thought this was a Marg Delahunty bit from This Hour Has 22 Minutes.

Speaking of loosening up: Christy Clark reaches deal with teachers just 24 hours after Dana Larsen mailed her pot. “We’ve come to a joint agreement,” indeed.

How to conflate the right to housing and the right to own property in one easy step: Politicians shouldn’t meddle with the housing market. “You want a house? Work hard and buy one — or move somewhere cheaper…” And if that doesn’t work, you could always call upon the meddling CHMC.

Related tweet of the century:

Meanwhile, back at the ranch: City says more than 100 unregulated recovery homes shut down in Surrey. Get those people on the streets immediately! And if they should so happen to mosey on down to a certain poorest postal code then so be it! They are truly free now.

Whipsers Only: $3000 / 1br – 1000ft² – Super Charmer. “If you are professionally employed and working 9-5 please apply for this amazing opportunity to be in Vancouver’s oldest and coolest neighbourhood”. Stop, stop, Strathcona’s already dead.

A city guide that isn’t completely awful: The HYPEBEAST City Guide to Vancouver. Not one single mention of the word ‘gritty’ when referring to Gastown. There is this, however: “In 2014 the neighboring Chinatown and Main Street areas are seeing notable expansion”. I had no idea that they were getting bigger…

Bonus: If you want a little more depth, here is a map of every single (known) performance space in Vancouver.

DIG IT | On Vancouver’s Maritime Museum, A Stunning Icon Of Mid-Century Modernism

September 18, 2014 


by Stevie Wilson | Opened in 1959, the Vancouver Maritime Museum is one of the most gorgeous pieces of mid-century modernist design in the city, not to mention one of the most comprehensive displays of this Pacific Northwest’s storied maritime history.

The site was built to coincide with provincial centennial celebrations the year before, commemorating the establishment of the colony of British Columbia in 1858. The main building was designed by C.B.K. Van Norman & Associates, including Australian architect Raymond O. Harrison, who’s personal interest in the development of this site subsequently led him to pursue a long career as a museum administrator and director across Canada.

The stunning A-frame design features bright wood-shingled siding and large floor-to-ceiling triangular fenestration providing those who pass by a glimpse of what’s inside. The shape of the building is no coincidence, for inside sits the main exhibit: the 80-ton St. Roch, a 1928 RCMP arctic patrol ship.

Savour the last bit of summer and check out one of their other all-ages exhibits Babes & Bathers: History of the Swimsuit, on until November 2nd. Take note, too, of the beautiful totem pole just adjacent to the museum, carved by famed BC artist Mungo Martin.


TEA & TWO SLICES | On Arctic Pipedreams & Rabid Bats Loving Guitar-Playing Hippies

September 16, 2014 


by Sean Orr | A perfect metaphor for Vancouver, its population, and its ruling party: Vancouver alleges spam attack as number of Twitter followers mushrooms over the weekend. “I’m the party star, I’m popular. I’ve got my own car, I’m popular. I’ll never get caught, I’m popular.

Fickle City: Broker: ‘There is no demand for Vancouver Canucks tickets’. So that means they are going to be cheaper, right? Right?

Speaking of supply and demand: Editorial: An economics lesson not learned. “In business, you charge what the market will bear, not what is unbearable”. You know what is unbearable? BC Ferries’ wifi. You know what makes it just a little bit better? The “BC Ferrys” parody Twitter account…

B.C. Teachers’ Strike Won’t Be Settled With Budget Surplus. Who’s in charge of the province’s finances? Tyrion fucking Lannister?

Related Instagram of the Day: Teachers Want To Much. [sic]

It’s heartland versus hinterland, and it’s a rout: Poor kids hit hard by school strike. Well, it wouldn’t be late-capitalism if rich kids were hard hit. “Teens could turn to drinking and drugs”. That is possibly the most generalized statement in the history of the world. Also, the place where most kids turn to drinking and drugs? Yup. School.

A Song of Ice and Ire: The Real Story Behind Canada’s Sudden Interest In Arctic Archaeology. Or, “Instead of extracting resources and leaving, we could populate the mid-Canada corridor—and create a bigger, better country: If We Build It, They Will Stay.

Although that sounds like a cute As It Happens-style, bringing-communities-together type of feel good scenario, it would probably be a giant neocolonial make-work project that looks more like this: Temporary foreign worker dies in freak accident, leaves chilling testimony.

Acidic Spill from Vancouver Island Metal Mine Enters Myra Creek. Well, I mean…what are parks for if not for acid substances?

And now, ladies and gentlemen, The Province: Video: Rabid bat attacks guitarist at campground jam session. “Derrick Skou is into a pretty good groove on his acoustic when the bat swoops into the frame from the left and circles him once before landing on his collar”. That’s gold, Jerry. Gold!

SCOUT LIST | 10 Things That You Should Absolutely Do Between Now & Next Week

September 16, 2014 


by Michelle Sproule | The main objective of this website is to scout out and promote the things that make Vancouver such a sweet place to be. We do this with an emphasis on the city’s independent spirit to foster a sense of connectedness within and between our communities, and to introduce our readers to the people who grow and cook our food, play the raddest tunes in our better venues, create our most interesting art, and design everything from what we wear to the spaces we inhabit. The Scout List is our carefully considered, first rate agenda of super awesome things that we’re either doing, wishing that we could do, or conspiring to do this week. You can also check it out in the Globe & Mail, from our calendar to theirs…and yours!

TASTE | Vancouver’s newest (and possibly coolest) wine event goes down this week. Co-founded by wine consultant Kurtis Kolt and Jeff Curry of The Wine Syndicate, Top Drop “looks to shine a brighter light on wineries who focus on producing wines with minimal intervention, paying particular attention to expressing an honest sense of time and place in the glass, the epitome of the term terroir.” The main event – a walk-around grazing-style tasting of wines from 24 wineries as well as pours from like-minded craft breweries and perfectly paired bites from food purveyors such as Curious Oyster, Les Amis du Fromage, Moccia & Urbani Salumeria, Terra Breads – takes place at Heritage Hall Tuesday night and tickets are going fast. Visit for more details, but do it quickly!
Tue, Sept 16 | Heritage Hall (3102 Main St) | $49 | DETAILS

DESIGN | There are scores of design-centric events happening throughout the city this week. From VDW: “Vancouver Design Week will turn the city into a petri dish of design process, practice, and perspectives; through a wide range of independent and collaborative programming.” Expect everything from parties to pop-ups, talks and tours, exhibits and workshops. We’re particularly interested to check out P4A (Party For Architects) at Vancouver Special (3612 Main St) on Tuesday night; “Future Livability: Boast or Bust? Can Metro Vancouver Maintain its ‘Livability Credibility’ for the Next 30 Years?” – a lecture at SFU on Wednesday night; and “Why I Design: 30+ Designers Talk With You About What They Do” at The Museum of Vancouver on Friday night.
Sept. 15 – 28 | Various locations, times and prices | DETAILS

MEDIA ARTS | New Forms Festival is on. This is the 14th year for a media arts festival that explores the convergence of music, media, performance and electronic art. Expect installations, talks and screenings as well as audio-visual performances in the Omnimax Theatre and electronic music artists pretty much everywhere.
Sept. 18-21 | Science World, Western Front, Creekside Park | $35 for 3 days | DETAILS

READ | Outfit yourself with a solid assortment of Autumn reads at the Friends of The Vancouver Public Library book sale this weekend. Thousands of discarded and gently used books go on sale starting Thursday – all of them going for less than $2.50 each. The special thing about this sale is that there will be a over 800 comic books in the mix. Pro tip: Saturday sees all books and comics half price.
Thu, Sept 18 – Sat, Sept 20 | 10am–5pm | VPL | 350 Georgia St | Free | DETAILS

COLOURS OF THE COAST | 30 artists from the IDEA (Illustration and Design) program at Capilano University Capilano University have been busy painting their impressions of Vancouver. The resulting body of work is impressive in style, talent and breadth – but don’t take our word for it, have a gander here. For an even better look at what young talent in the city is producing, head to Harbour Centre on Friday night where all original works will be on display against the 360 degree backdrop of the city in the Vancouver Lookout space. Expect live painting demonstrations, refreshments, art work, and lots of inspiration.
Fri, Sept 19 | 5-9pm | Vancouver Lookout (555 W Hastings) | Free | DETAILS

ARCHITECTURE PORN | The Vancouver Heritage Foundation is holding it’s annual Midcentury Modern Residential House Tour this weekend. Participants get to tour the interiors of 5 ‘significant’ West Coast Regional Style Modernist homes in Vancouver. Architecture wonks will appreciate that this year’s tour includes homes by architects including Ned Pratt and Barry Downs, and a Duncan McNab home with landscaping by Cornelia Hahn Oberlander. There will be a post-tour reception at Vancouver Maritime Museum where participants will be invited to listen to Professor Sherry McKay talk about the history of Modernism in Vancouver over refreshments. A little bit of post-and-beam appreciation, a little bit of wine and cheese – sounds like an exceedingly civilized Saturday!
Sat, Sept 20 | 1-5pm | Various locations | $85 | DETAILS

SECRET SUPPER | The Swallow Tail Secret Supper Club is holding one of their quick-to-sell-out dinners this weekend. This time around they’re joining forces with Ignacio Arrieta of La Mezcalaria to host a dinner in support of artist Angela Fama. Fama is a local photographer who is raising funds to help her realize a project (“Wabisabi Butterfly/What is Love?“) that will see her take a pop-up Boler photo studio across North America to capture micro-expressions that appear when the subject is asked about the word love. Short story: you buy a seat at a fancy Mexican dinner (in a garden if it’s sunny and in a wine cellar should there be rain) with proceeds going to fund an amazing art project.
Sat, Sept 20 | 5:30pm/8pm seatings | Location revealed @ ticket purchase | $79 | DETAILS

ICONS | Time for some Fall duds! If you’re in the market for something a little less mainstream think about taking a pocket of cash to the magical subterranean caverns of the Biltmore Cabaret this Sunday because the Icons Vintage Market is back! Swoop in and score retro clothing, flea-market finds, fancy antiques, accessories, shoes, jewellery, records, cool household items, cameras, and all manner of other curious trinkets. This is a cabaret, so the bar will be open and you have to be 19+ to enter. Shoppin’, drinkin’, and dancin’ encouraged!
Sun, Sept 21 | 11 am–5 pm | Biltmore Cabaret (2755 Prince Edward) | DETAILS

CREATE | School is still out and weather has been summery, but something in our bones tells us September is a time for settling in to do some good ol’ fashioned learning. If you’ve got that feeling but don’t have the funds or time to enrol in full-on studies, think about taking part in a one day class at Hot Art Wet City gallery. Local artist Rachael Ashe is leading an Altered Book workshop that will school you on how to transform old books into one-of-a-kind pieces of art. Not only will you walk away inspired, but you’ll also leave with one project underway and you’ll be armed with an understanding of techniques and skills necessary to keep on going. There are only ten spots available, so snap one up here mighty fast.
Sat, Sept 20 | 12:30-4:30 pm | Hot Art Wet City Gallery (2206 Main St) | $90 | DETAILS

HIKE | Fall is a perfect time for hiking in Vancouver. Temperatures are accommodating, crowds thin out and the colours, smells and sounds of the changing seasons are captivating. Take the low road out to Lighthouse Park (doable by car, bike or bus) and wander the trails for a few hours. There is nothing quite as restorative and grounding as time out to appreciate nature. Breathe deep, smell the turning leaves, pine needles, and salt air. When you’re done, hit up Savary Island Pie Co. (1533 Marine Dr, West Van) for a piece of pumpkin pie and a latte.
Any time | Free | DETAILS

MODERN DAY NOMADS |  Lloyd Khan is an author, photographer and small and hand-built home enthusiast with a passion for unique homes and structures. Khan is in town from Marin County, California next week to promote his latest book Tiny Homes On The Move. He’ll be at the main branch of the Vancouver Public Library on Monday night to present a slideshow of images of people “living and travelling in boats, trailers, pick-up trucks, vans and buses adapted with ingenious and often beautifully designed quarters.” Not only is the topic of creative housing alternative apropos to our city, but Khan strikes us as the kind of guy capable of filling an hour and a half easily. This is guaranteed to be a mind-expanding and inspiring evening, so don’t miss out.
Mon, Sept 22 | 7pm | VPL Central Branch – VPL (350 W. Georgia) | Free | DETAILS  

late-may-2009-169Michelle Sproule grew up in Kitsilano and attended University in Australia and the University of Victoria before receiving her graduate degree in Library Sciences from The University of Toronto. She lives in beautiful Strathcona and enjoys wandering aimlessly through the city’s streets with her best friend – a beat up, sticky, grimy (but faithful) camera.

FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE BRIEF #434 | Time Lapse Shows California’s Stunning Diversity

September 15, 2014 

(via) This timelapse showcasing California was filmed over a four year period by Hal Bergman.

“California is the most populated state in the United States, and the third largest. It’s almost double the size of the United Kingdom and slightly larger than Japan. If it was it’s own independent country (as it was briefly for a few weeks in 1846), it would have the 8th largest economy in the world by GDP. It contains the highest summit and the lowest desert in the Contiguous United States (and the second-lowest point in the world), both of which are in the same county. It’s most known for movies, technology, wine, and national parks, but also grows more than a third of the vegetables consumed in the US, two-thirds of the fruits and nuts, and an unknown but presumably huge percentage of marijuana. It contains every major climatological biome except tundra. More important than those facts, to me, is that I was born and spent most of my life here.”

Locations include (in alphabetical order) Alabama Hills, Big Sur, Bombay Beach, Death Valley National Park, Gilroy, Inyo National Forest, Jenner, Joshua Tree, Lake Tahoe, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Malibu, Mono Lake South Tufa Reserve, Mount Shasta, Napa, Onyx, Owens Lake, Salinas, San Diego, San Francisco, San Luis Obispo, Santa Monica, Sequoia National Forest, Venice, Weldon, and Yosemite National Park.


TEA & TWO SLICES | On Voyeuristic Punk Adventurism And Temporary Devil Genitals

September 11, 2014 


by Sean Orr | More voyeuristic, romantic, hagiography regarding the DTES. I expected better from Vice: A look at the punk scene coming out of one of Canada’s Poorest Postal Code. “The scene is, I think it’s getting a bit more real, which sounds kind of lame”. It sure does. No mention of any actual punk bands, and no mention of The Astoria, Emergency Room, Alf House, Red Gate, The Cobalt, Secret Location/Nite Prison, or Chi Pig. You know that I’m wary of the G-word, but the piece just reeks of middle-class, neo-colonial adventurism.

Related: East Vancouver studio owner plans fundraiser after thieves steal at least $6,000 worth of music gear.

Devil Chilling Park? New guerrilla art lasts less than a day.

Cue the inevitable petition to bring it back. “Just as some were offended by the price tag and substance of the porcelain dog, others may have been offended at the sight of Lucifer’s Plastic Love Pump, but none would be offended at its price tag”. You leave the poor Main Street Poodle out of this. It’s suffered enough!

Oh noes! Jamie Lee Hamilton leaves COPE, alleges Left Front blocking her nomination. Best reader comment: “I hope I don’t confuse online voter registry with a Buzzfeed ‘Which Ninja Turtle Are You?’ quiz.”

Gregor Robertson can’t stop tanker traffic or build a subway, so why leave that impression? ”The National Energy Board will make a decision on Kinder Morgan’s application”. Shh, don’t tell Burnaby! Burnaby asks court to block Kinder Morgan B.C. pipeline.

Meanwhile, Gregor can’t stop the teacher’s strike either, but that doesn’t mean he shouldn’t comment on it. Why has Vancouver’s ‘progressive’ Mayor been so quiet about the BC teachers’ strike? Update: Vancouver mayor adds support for binding arbitration in B.C. teachers’ strike.

Now if we can only get him to do something about his transparency problem…

But if that bit of journalism isn’t sexy enough for you: Vancouver mayoral race now a three-way. “The 53-year-old mental health worker and longtime community organizer will battle Mayor Gregor Robertson and NPA challenger Kirk LaPointe for votes in a multicultural city that has never had a female mayor or one of Chinese descent”.

Unrelated: Naked Sushi celebrates the tradition of sexism, not Japanese culinary culture.

You-probably-haven’t-heard-of of the day: Palestine Awareness Coalition protests at Deltaport.

A Hitchcockian urban nightmare! City life’s a rat race in Vancouver — and the rats may be winning. With raw video of…you guessed it, rats! Who is this mysterious Johnny Appleseed of East Van? Can he be stopped?

Bonus: Mark’s Work Wearhouse Announces Rules for Who Gets to Wear Plaid. Beware, it’s a joke. A lumberjoke!

VICTORY GARDENS | 3 Good Things Every Local Green Thumb Should Plant This Week

September 10, 2014 


by Lisa Giroday, Sandra Lopuch and Sam Philips | We hate to be alarmist or the bearers of bad news, but the time has come to squeak in one of the last veggie seedings into your garden. You can always employ the warmth of hoop houses, cloches, and cold frames once the cold hits, but you need to get some seeds in the ground before it’s too late! Here’s a list of our top 3 seed varieties you should get in the ground now if you know what’s good for you…

1. Spinach | Remember when you tried to seed spinach in the summer and it “bolted” right away? It produced a flower stalk and it was all over? Well, now is the chance to rectify the situation and have success with seeding spinach. Spinach prefers cooler weather, which is why it’s best to seed in spring or late summer. Spinach will overwinter (and you can harvest all winter into spring) if we have a mild one upon us. If it gets chilly, throw up a protective cloche over it to keep it warm. Choose a cold hardy variety to further ensure success. We love the semi-savoyed leaved “Bloomsdale Savoy”. Remember to make sure the soil has adequate drainage. Bonus: you can pick individual leaves throughout winter into spring for your health blast of vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotene, manganese, zinc and selenium, all of which serve as powerful antioxidants.

2. Radishes | These mature very quickly. As with spinach, radishes prefer cooler weather, so they’re an ideal veggie to seed right now. You might want to choose a variety that matures quickly, like Easter Egg or French Breakfast. If you missed your window on getting carrots or beets in the ground, you can still enjoy the goodness of roots. Remember to thin your radish patch or row, as they need space to grow. Any seedlings that are crowded need to be properly spaced for maximum growth.

3. Pac Choi | Another veggie that tends to bolt, or go to seed quickly in the heat. The plant freaks out, finishes its life cycle, and there you have it. Remember that veggies that are best planted in the early spring are usually good bets for planting now, too. Think of it as “mirroring the weather”. Pac Choi grows very quickly, and you can harvest individual stems, harvest the whole plant, or treat as a “cut-and-come-again” crop. Snip, and watch it re-grow. We recommend seeding this crop by the weekend!

A few other seed varieties you can get in the ground right now are: arugula, corn salad, mustards, mizuna, and gai lan. And don’t fret – the time has not yet come to plant garlic, and you can still seed your broad beans or fava beans either now or by the end of the month. Happy growing!


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