FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE BRIEF #433 | Rush Hour In Taipei Is NOT Like It Is In Vancouver

In Taiwan’s Taipei City, the morning rush hour across Taipei Bridge appears to be as smoothly mesmerizing as it is unfathomably insane. If the calm is typical, it really puts the peak-time chaos of entering/exiting Vancouver into embarrassing perspective. It would be a fascinating thing to watch our many road/roid raging morning commuters try to merge with such a calm, purposeful throng. There would likely be casualties, so it’s for the best that our respective road systems don’t connect.


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


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!

GIN + JUICE | Get yourself to Gastown’s Nouvelle Nouvelle this Thursday night for an evening inspired by Snoop Dog’s classic jam “Gin+Juice”. The shop isn’t just having a sale (20-40% off) of their very beautiful men’s and women’s clothing lines. They’ve also asked Odd Society bartender Matt Cooke to bring some gin over to their shop to make some drinks with fresh, cold-pressed juices from The Juice Truck. The whole shopping / cocktail experience will go down with an old school hip hop soundtrack and a room full of solid people. Plus, it could be an interesting experiment in whether or not the nutritional value of the cold pressed juice can cancel out the naughty gin. Because science is good, right?
Thu, July 24 | 6-10pm | Nouvelle Nouvelle (209 Abbott St.) | DETAILS

PRECISION | Chef and “knife-nerd” Kevin Kent is in town to entice you with fine quality Japanese knives. Knifewear opens at The Chinatown Experiment this week. Head down to 434 Columbia St. to handle, hear about and drool over a line-up of hundreds of knives from more than 40 of the best Japanese knife brands. Also on hand: a selection of supporting artifacts like chef-curated cookbooks, cutting boards, and kitchen gadgets. “Cooking is the new rock and roll,” Kent says. “And the new black leather pants are Japanese knives.” Heck yeah they are.
Now through July 27 | 11am – 7pm | 434 Columbia St. | DETAILS

RESTAURANT RUMBLE | The event of the month goes down this Wednesday. The charity boxing showdown organized by the Aprons for Gloves Boxing Association is pitting Vancouver’s bussers against its barbers and its cooks against its bartenders. It happens in two parts: “Undercard Fights” go down in the afternoon (3:30-6:30pm) followed by the Title Fights in the evening (7-10pm). At three 3-minute rounds per, Title Fights go down fast. Boxers go glove to glove without headgear or shirts and title belts are on the line. This event is sold out, but the resourceful enthusiast will be able to get hands on tickets through darker channels. Also, this event will also be live streamed at The Bottleneck on Granville Street.
Wed, July 23 | 3:30 & 7pm | SFU Woodward | 149 W. Hastings | Various $ | DETAILS

AFTER HOURS | How cool would it be to hang out at the Vancouver Aquarium after hours? No view-hogging children or toe-crunching strollers, just gentle darkness with the soothing sounds of water and jellyfish. This Wednesday night brings just such an opportunity: After Hours is an evening of engaging awesomeness set inside the Aquarium. Guests can enjoy wine, beer and a little scientific talk, a show about caring for Dolphins, a film, and a spin in the wet lab where they can touch invertebrates like sea stars and urchins. So civilized. Tickets are selling fast; try Craigslist or FB if you can’t score directly from the Aquarium.
Wed, July 23 | 6:30-10pm | Vancouver Aquarium | Stanley Park | $25 | DETAILS

GO GREEN | Earthsave Canada offers a free talk on the benefits of plant-based diets at Robson Square on Thursday night. If you’re interested in shifting your diet to include more plants think about attending to hear what physician, author, and speaker Michael Greger can tell you about the latest in plant-based nutrition and health research. This event is open to the public on a first come first serve basis.
Fri, July 25 | 7pm | UBC Robson Square (800 Robson St) | Free | DETAILS

MORBID CURIOUSITY | Stanley Park might be a serene aggregate of quiet forest paths with a inviting coastline, but like many beautiful things, it has a dark side. This weekend is your chance to get the scoop on some of the park’s shady past including murders, suicides, park cemeteries and burial places, treasure, shipwrecks, drownings, and what can only be described as mysterious incidences – if you’re in to that sort of thing.
Sat, July 26 | 1-3pm | Lost Lagoon Nature House | $10 | DETAILS

PICK-YOUR-OWN | It’s blueberry season! Farmers markets and local grocery stores are loaded with them, but picking your own is a fun summer activity. Head toward Ladner/Delta and out to Westham Island (directions). Once you cross the wooden planked bridge to the soft roads lined by long grass and foxgloves, you’ll find fantastic u-pick berry farms and roadside egg and vegetable stands. Take your own buckets for easy post-picking transportation.
Emma Lea Farms | Daily 10am – 6pm | 2727 Westham Island Rd. (Ladner) | DETAILS

PRIDE | Vancouver Pride is gearing up. This weekend watch out for the Pride Walk & Run (starting AND finishing at Brockton Oval in Stanley Park with disco water stations in between) as well as Pride picnic (a family friendly event that will involve all manner of games like volleyball, tug-of-war, watermelon eating and a high-heel shoe toss). The main event – Pride Parade – goes down next Sunday, but between now and then there are numerous events to take in.
Now through Sun, August 3 | Various times and locations | DETAILS

FIREWORKS | Keep in mind that Celebration of Light fireworks (aka Stab Night) start this week (Saturday). First to represent their country with pyrotechnic expression is the United Sates (July 26), followed by France (July 30), and finally, Japan (August 2nd). Plan accordingly, and for crying out loud, don’t try to drive through the West End while the festivities are going down. Also, no knives, please. For serious.
Sat, July 26, 30, August 2 | 10am | English Bay | Free | DETAILS

ROAD TRIP | Wine Country is something pretty right now. If you can slip away for a weekend, consider heading to the stunning Similkameen Valley for an al fresco dinner in a vineyard that will capture everything that’s magical about summer. Think warm air, beautiful light, amazing food, fine conversation, and phenomenal wine. The Orofino 1.6 Mile Dinner offers a five course meal utilizing ingredients gathered from farmers and artisan producers from within a 1.6 mile radius of the Similkameen’s charming Orofino Winery. Preparing the meal will be Cameron Smith and Dana Ewart from Joy Road Catering and Gold Medal Plate-winning Chef Mark Filatow  of Waterfront Wines. Dinner starts with bubbly and canapés at 5:30pm. Contact 250-499-0068 or admin [at] to make your reservations.
Sat, July. 26 | 5:30 | Orofino Strawbale Winery | Cawston, BC | $150 pp | 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 Big Fat Payouts And “Trendy” $800 Bachelor Suites On Main St.


by Sean Orr | This is not an AC/DC reference: By the numbers: B.C. budget back in black. More money for welfare and teachers right? Wrong. More money for payouts. Smyth: B.C. finance minister should be more than just ‘disappointed’ about payments to public execs. The article doesn’t even mention Michael Graydon: B.C. Lottery Corp. wants $55,000 back from ex-CEO.

Debt Free BC. “The real policy problem in this province is not that we are failing to move to a debt free B.C. The policy problem is that we are incurring debt for things we don’t need”.

Related tweet of the day:


Why can’t EI be U and I? EI is not actually helping low-income Canadians. “The lowest-income group only receives around 16 per cent of the benefits depending on the year. The poor pay into EI while working, but they are less likely to collect benefits if they’re laid off.”

The 10 most endangered jobs of 2014: Mail carrier, newspaper reporter, lumberjack. Yeah? You forget cross border pot smuggler…

You too could live in an office lunch room of a call centre in Mumbai: $800 Trendy Main St. Furnished Bachelor. Remember, the street is trendy, not the apartment. Or you could live at 955 East Hastings, now rebranded as The Ballantyne, ironically evoking one of the most important labour battles in Vancouver’s history.

Are conservative think tanks aiming their big guns at Vancouver City Hall? Wait, they haven’t already?

Why settle for Vision Vancouver or the NPA?. You’re talking about TEAM right?

Chinese Advertisements creating controversy in West Vancouver. What do you expect from West Van, home of the British Properties, where it is still technically illegal to sell your home to a Chinese person?

Save Black Dog Video. Sorry, I gave all my money to the potato salad guy.

(Top image: coyote seen off the Olympic Village seawall last night)

FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE BRIEF #432 | The Unbelievable Story Of India’s “Forest Man”

(via) Hats off to Toronto-based filmmaker William McMaster for sharing such an fascinating and inspiring story.

Since the 1970′s Majuli islander Jadav Payeng has been planting trees in order to save his island. To date he has single handedly planted a forest larger than Central Park NYC. His forest has transformed what was once a barren wasteland into a lush oasis. Humble yet passionate and philosophical about his work. Payeng takes us on a journey into his incredible forest…

Payeng’s forest is now populated by a wide range of animals, among them deer, elephant, rhino, and tigers. Money quote: “There are no monsters in nature except for humans”.


TEA & TWO SLICES | On Secret Swimming Spots & The Joys Of Political Masturbation


by Sean Orr | In The Province newspaper: Point, Counter Lapointe. It’s comforting to see that our newspapers are reducing the local political landscape to a contest of retail store brands. Apparently, this election is Hill’s of Kerrisdale meets The Running Room versus Mountain Equipment Co-Op meets Moore’s Clothing for Men. As far as I’m concerned, all I see is a couple of bone monsters covered in flesh.

Hyperbole alert: Decision 2014: Another Nail in the Vision Vancouver Coffin. We all masturbate, but few of us do it so messily in the form of blog posts.

Spot me, bro: Vancouver’s ‘Spot Zoning’ Is Corrupting Its Soul. “The rules for development in Vancouver appear to have become: Go big and cough up lots of CAC, or go home…” I just coughed up a little CAC reading that sentence.

To be fair, our soul has been corrupt for a long time now. To wit: Square Watermelons Sell For $200 In Vancouver.

Related: get your pitchforks ready.

TL;DR: Why Canada isn’t immune to a U.S.-style housing crash.

Inevitable Tweet of the Day:

Vancouver officials crack down on ‘Beer Island’. It would suck if we had to change Scout’s Beer Island entry in the Lexicon to “By-law Island”. Clean your shit up!

Bored In Vancouver gets flack for revealing the locations of some of Vancouver’s not-so-secret swimming holes.

Graffiti on Dude Chilling Park sign cleaned. Yo dawg, I heard you like art so I’m putting a re-vandalized version of your fake sign next to your fake sign.

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


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!

SOME COOL PICS | Vancouver based Photographer Andrew Volk has his first solo show – SOME PICS, Pre-Tinder to Present – opening on Thursday night at The Something Club on Powell Street. Volks work can be gentle and deliberate as well as hard and raw. Get a sense of style via Jeff Hamada’s post on Booooooom. This show only runs until July 23 so don’t stall.
Thu, July 17 | 7-10 pm | The Something Club – 1505 E Powell St | DETAILS

ART | A multi-show exhibition launches at The Burrard Arts Foundation this week.  James Knight and Steffen Quong humanise the concept of Kintsukuroi, a traditional Japanese pottery repair method that sees broken items put back together with molten gold, a process that renders the object more beautiful for having been broken. Instead of pottery, these artists apply the concept to people and communication. Artist Eric Rieger will create a site-specific installation using thousands of meticulously cut, measured and knotted pieces of yarn and Kate Henderson and Erin Siddall will look at issues of gender, technology and art in How To Make Good Movies. The opening reception is this Thursday night. The show continues until September 27th.
Thu, July 17 | 7-10pm | The Burrard Arts Foundation (108 E Broadway) | Free | DETAILS

SHAKESPEARE | Bard On The Beach throws down with performances of The Tempest and Cymbeline this weekend. Arrive early for some time in Bard Village where you can take advantage of the full concession and bar services, poke around the Bard boutique or just chat with other theatre-goers. Shakespeare on a Vancouver beach in July = amazing.
All Weekend | Various times | Vanier Park, Kits Point | $47 | DETAILS

DISCOVER | Whether you are new to the city of just interested in brushing up on local history, an Architectural Institute of British Columbia walking tour is a great way to get to know Vancouver. View the personality of the city through the prism of its landmarks, buildings, structures and streets. Learn about  heritage preservation, contemporary and historic architectural styles, the impact urban planning policy has on the evolution of the city, and more. There are six tours in all, each covering a distinct area of the city. Walks include: Chinatown (From yesterday to Today); Gastown (The Historic Beginning of Vancouver); Strathcona (Vancouver’s First Neighbourhood); Yaletown (Industrial Expansion and Evolution); West End (Residential Transformation), and Downtown (The Business Core of Vancouver). AIBC Walking Tours begin at the AIBC office located at 440 Cambie Street (@Pender) at 10am and 1pm most days of the week (except Monday and Friday afternoons).
Various days | 10am, 1pm | 440 Cambie Street | $10 | DETAILS

NORTH VAN NIGHT MARKET | There’s something decidedly magical about riding the current of a crowd on a summer evening. This weekend we suggest checking out the The North Vancouver Shipyards Twilight Market. While not as large in scale as other markets, this one still attracts enough traffic to leave you feeling like you’ve attended a summer festival of sorts. It’s an easy ride on the seabus from Downtown to Lonsdale Quay. Expect live music and plenty of good food. In addition to a line-up of 15 food trucks, you’ll find countless farmer’s market-style stalls, tables, and booths of fruits and veggies, as well as baked goods, preserves, popsicles and pies. Pro tip: the beer garden goes down on Friday night only.
Thu + Fri | 5-10pm | Shipbuilders’ Square, North Vancouver | DETAILS

VANCOUVER FOLK MUSIC FESTIVAL | Folk Fest spreads across Jericho Park this weekend. There’s something quintessentially Vancouver about this three day event. Even if you’re not into folk music, a summer evening at Jericho with music flowing is just flat out awesome. This year we’re looking forward to catching folk legend Joan Baez, Andrew Bird, Vancouver-based Brasstronaut, Folk-rockers Fish and Bird from Victoria, Great Lake Swimmers, Amos Lee, East coast indie crew Wintersleep and Australia’s Frank Yamma. Pack a blanket and relax; outdoor folk music in the (historical) heart of Vancouver hippiedom is an experience you are honour bound to work into your summer plans.
July 19-21 | Jericho Beach | $40 – $170 depending on your commitment | DETAILS

CHILL | Cates Park is a beautiful North Shore waterfront green space is gorgeous, but if it and it’s adjoining beach weren’t enough to get you there, how about the fact that it has free public concerts on Saturdays? Well, that and an on-site Wally Burger concession? Done deal! What could be better than Chuck Wagon burgers, yam fries, chocolate milkshakes, sunshine and live music? This week you can look forward to performances by Deborah Holland (4pm), The Wild Romantics (5pm) and Jodi Pederson (6pm).
Sat, July 19 | 4 – 7 pm | Cates Park 4141 Dollarton Hwy, North Van | Free | DETAILS

COOK | Members of the UBC Farm Maya in Exile Garden are putting on a cooking class this Saturday. In addition to being schooled on how to make a proper corn tortilla, participants in the “Three Sisters in the Kitchen” workshop will learn how to make bledo con frijol (beans with amaranth leaf) and kelite frito con queso envuelto en tortilla (lambs quarters cooked with cheese wrapped in tortillas), among other things. Workshop leaders are well versed, so expect expert cooking advice as well as talk about medicinal and culinary uses for various herbs and vegetables grown right there in the Mayan garden plot at the UBC Farm.
Sat, July. 19 | 2-4pm | UBC Farm (3461 Ross St , UBC) | $30 | DETAILS

EXPLORE | Catch the sunset from Iona Beach Regional Park (just north of the Vancouver International Airport) in Richmond. Iona is a beautiful stretch of sandy shoreline that spreads toward the sea at the mouth of the Fraser River. In addition to walking the beach (when the tide is out it goes on for ever), there’s also a walkable breakwater, raised boardwalks, and a crazy network of unmarked trails. To get there, cross the Arthur Laing Bridge on your way to the airport but turn right at the first traffic light (Grauer Road) and follow the signs.

CHOW | Food Cart Fest is on again this Sunday. A fleet of some 20 food trucks will be parked around communal tables at a site located between Olympic Village and The Cambie Street Bridge. Expect Soho Road, Mom’s Grilled Cheese, Mogu, Roaming Dragon, Yolks, and Tacofino – maybe even The Juice Truck. And the fun doesn’t stop there. There will also be live music, a market, and all manner of ancillary vendors making it the raddest bit of undeveloped real estate in the city for one day of each week
Sun, July 20 | 12-5pm | 215 W 1st Ave, Olympic Village | $2  | DETAILS

Check the Globe & Mail every Thursday for our Special Weekend Edition of the Scout List


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 Urban Noise & Old Journalists Who Have Never Smoked Weed


by Sean Orr | Traffic: British Columbians headed south on the road to legal weed will need to beware of a few potholes. Get it? Potholes!!! Apparently, The Province newspaper thinks you’re all the stupidest people on the planet. But then that’s nothing new. They also think that your pot dealer will try and upsell you to cocaine, or even meth. They probably got this notion from watching After-School Specials.

(Hilariously) related: Man buys legal recreational marijuana, loses job after media coverage. “I am number one and nobody can take that…” You and Nelly, my brother.

You too can be the most overrated rockstar in the entire world! Chad Kroeger’s former home in Abbotsford hits market for $9 million. Perhaps the City of Abbotsford could make this their new homeless shelter?

Meanwhile, New Affordable Housing Agency to address need for new homes, says Mayor. There is a need. Agency dismissed! “Agency to prioritize 2500 affordable homes for families of low, moderate income”. Here’s Wisemonkey and Pulp Fiction to clarify that for you:

Compass Card rollout delayed again. For some reason – like I’m a journalist or something – I had the bright idea of googling Cubic Corporation, the company responsible for Compass, and found this awesome slide show.

Is it any wonder that the military industrial complex wants in on this honeypot? Transit Police Report Riders to Immigration Nearly Every Day. That is so not fare. And here I was boycotting Arizona Ice Tea

Isn’t “urban noise” an oxymoron? Sounds of silence a challenge in Vancouver. No mention of that bloody noon O Canada horn that wakes me up every…er…morning. Or the Seabus horn. Or the Steam Clock. Or the garbage trucks at 6am. Or the United We Can alley cleaners. Or the Nine O’Clock Gun that scares my cat. Or the Gastown Grand Prix that is driving Lambos into ladies outside my house as I write this…

Injured B.C. cyclist posts photo on Facebook of SUV and driver that hit him. No, but bikes are the dangerous ones…

Related: Why Bikes Make Smart People Say Dumb Things.

Under Tariff 8, Barenaked Ladies would need 9,216 plays of “If I Had $1,000,000? to earn enough royalties to buy one box of Kraft Dinner. “But how many spins would they need for Steven Page to get a bag of cocaine”? – Trevor Risk

Canadian Dad Publishes Worst Concert Review Ever. That would be enough for a harmless chuckle if the author wasn’t also on the Polaris Prize jury (thanks to Alan Ranta for that one).

The Westender is funny? 11 things BuzzFeed has wrong about Vancouver.

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


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!

FRESH AIR FILM | Grab yourself some tasty summer picnic food and stake-out a spot on the grass with your best blanket because Tuesday night is movie night in Stanley Park. This week: The Lego Movie. From IMBD: “An ordinary Lego construction worker, thought to be the prophesied ‘Special’, is recruited to join a quest to stop an evil tyrant from gluing the Lego universe into eternal stasis.” A threat we can all relate to – ETERNAL STASIS MUST BE STOPPED!
Tues, July 8 | Dusk | Stanley Park at Ceperley Meadow / 2nd Beach | DETAILS

TOUR DE GASTOWN |  Wednesday evening is the Gastown Grand Prix. Riders from clear across North America are here to participate in the 1.2 course through the streets of this historic Vancouver ‘hood – get in on the fun! Secure a good spot (Chill Winston, Six Acres, Pourhouse, or The Diamond all look like nice options) and settle in to watch blurs of spandex zoom by lap after cobblestoned lap (35 for women, 50 for men). There will be a few other people in the crowd, so pack light and take public transit (driving to this gig isn’t advisable as parking will be a nightmare).
Wed, July 9 | 5:45 Opening Ceremonies | Gastown | Free | DETAILS

STARS | There’s a rad show going down at the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre on Thursday night. Science Fair is an art exhibit and interactive ‘science fair’ that also involves – ahem – music, wine, and beer. Wander the planetarium, sip on civilized glasses of wine and consider the relationship between art and science. Expect a show of paintings, illustrations, sculptures and awesome installations made by visual artists and enthusiastic science wonks (the artist’s reception, located in the lower lobby exhibit area, begins at 7:30pm). Later in the evening (around 10pm) there will be a technician-guided star show in the planetarium accompanied by synth-psych music by Sinoia Caves, Von Bingen, and Kensington Gore. What a trip!
Thu, July 10 | 7pm | H.R. MacMillan Space Centre (1100 Chestnut) | $20 | DETAILS

MUSIC | The Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden kicks off it’s Enchanted Evenings summer concert series this week, and this year there’s a twist to things. The soothing draw of the serene swaying bamboo and lily pad-strewn ponds remains, but for the 2014 season the concert series shakes things up with reservable seats, gourmet picnic dinners (order in advance for $10-$29), plus wine and beer. The first concert of the summer is Chinese-Western musical fusion ensemble Silk Road Music. If you can’t make the concert, don’t panic as there will be a total of five Enchanted Evenings and each will have a unique feel and tempo. Silk Road (Friday,July 11); Tomoe Arts (Thursday, July 17); Jim Byrnes (Thursday, July 24); Vancouver Piano Ensemble (Thursday, July 31); and Deanna Knight and the Hot Club of Mars (Thursday, August 7).
Fri, July 11 | Doors 7pm | 578 Carrall St. | Concert $25, Picnic / Wine extra | DETAILS

CLOSING | At the intersection of decision-making, all possibilities are open. Choose the right over the left, one job over another, answer the phone or don’t – multiple futures waiver in that moment; “…and all our possibilities collapse into the singular of what is, rippling outward from the moment of decision to affect our lives in ways unknown…” Those moments are the subject of Vancouver artist Adam Lupton’s final show – What’s In Store For Me In The Direction I Don’t Take? - at The Positive Negative Gallery in Chinatown. Lupton, who has run the gallery for the past several years, is closing shop to move to New York where he has been accepted to grad school (congratulations Adam!). If you have never been to the Positive Negative gallery, this is your last chance to check it out. If you have, this is your opportunity to get in and wish Adam good luck while standing in a room full of his latest work – a pretty swell way to make an exit!
Fri, July 11 | 7pm | Positive Negative Gallery | 436 Columbia St. | DETAILS

BASEBALL | The Vancouver Canadians are in town all week playing games at Nat Bailey Stadium. Nothing says summer like a bag of peanuts, a cold beer and a baseball game on a home field. Canadians play Everett Friday through Sunday and then take on Eugene Monday through Friday of next week. Thats a game every day (most games begin at 7pm) and sunshine on the weather forecast.
July 11 – 18 | Scotiabank Field at Nat Bailey Stadium (4601 Ontario St.) | $12.50 | DETAILS

KHATSAHLANO | Things are always pretty awesome along West 4th, but that Khatsahlano Street Party really takes the Kits experience to a whole new level. There will be 8 stages located across 10 blocks of West 4th. These will showcase over 50 of Vancouver’s finest independent bands and solo musicians as well as many other artists and performers. So grab some sunscreen and good walking shoes and don’t plan on being home for dinner. This is a full-day gig that you won’t want to leave early. The Poppy Family Experience, Humans, Lightening Dust, Aiden Knight, Bend Sinister, The Shilohs – the list goes on and on. Check out the full line-up of performers here and develop a game plan to maximize your live outdoor free musical enjoyment. Plus, beer gardens!
Sat, July 12 | 11-8pm | Along 4th Ave between Burrard & MacDonald | Free | DETAILS

FARMACIE | A summer evening long table farm dinner is something that everyone should do at least once. If you haven’t managed to attend one yet this season, consider heading out to the Fresh Roots Schoolyard Market Garden at David Thompson Secondary this Saturday night for Farmacie, a community dinner celebrating local food. Expect lots of fresh veggies, bread from Nelson The Seagull (with a delicious sounding smokey zucchini hummus), some arugula, mint and cilantro salad (with blueberries, feta and a lime jalepeno vinaigrette),  basil gnocchi, sausages, and pavlova with fruit for dessert. Chefs Juno Kim and Marika Richoz will be preparing the feast with proceeds going to support Fresh Roots. “Fresh Roots transforms open spaces into thriving neighbourhood gathering places through urban agriculture. More than growing a garden, they grow communities. Their schoolyard market gardens are working farms and living classrooms on school grounds.” That’s a pretty solid cause. Remember that the price of your ticket includes beer and wine.
Sat, July 12 | 7pm | David Thompson Secondary School (1755 E 55th Ave) | $125 | DETAILS

ART | Over the last few years many of Vancouver’s galleries have re-located to a parcel of land between Main Street and Clark Drive just above Industrial Avenue. Some of these new tenants have given the area a new name – ‘The Flats’ – and this weekend they are planning to strut their stuff with a collective summer bash boasting numerous exhibitions. Get this: Monte Clark Gallery will be showing Evan Lee and Jonathan Syme; Equinox is showing works by LA artist Etienne Zack; Macaulay & Co has Shawn Hunt in to give a talk (2pm); The Wil Aballe Art Project has an artist talk (Jordy Hamilton, 5pm); Gallery 295 is holding an opening reception for Scott Billings; The Winsor Gallery opens a two-person exhibition of Angela Grossmann’s Swagger series and figurative sculpture by David Robinson alongside an exhibition of paintings by Alessandro Papetti (talk 3pm); Chernoff Fine Art has a Photosession opening reception (12pm); and Field Contemporary Gallery has a performance at 1pm and a talk at 4pm. That’s 8 galleries with full walls and added bonuses of attending artists, talks, and performances, all in one wee microhood.
Sat, July 11 | Various locations “The Flats” | DETAILS

ESCAPE | If you’re in need of a summer vacation but can’t manage to slip away from work for a long weekend, consider heading to Bowen Island for the day. Exploring beaches and forests on Bowen is a fantastic way to spend an afternoon. There’s no need for a car. If you catch the 11am boat from Horseshoe Bay as a walk-on passenger you will arrive at the Marina Pier just in time for lunch (we highly recommend ordering yourself a rice bowl from Shika – just to your right as you disembark the ferry). This weekend is Steamship Days and there will be lots of activity as a result. Expect to see beautiful specimens of wooden boats brought over by The Vancouver Wooden Boat Society, as well as antique cars, live music, performance, a summer market, real live artists and patient, talented people leading kids’ activities (not to mention those great beaches and lovely shaded forest trails).
July 11,12,13 | Bowen Island | DETAILS  

Check the Globe & Mail every Thursday for our Special Weekend Edition of the Scout List


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 Civic Engagements & Railroading Through Our Neighbourhoods


by Sean Orr | Original city-builders vs. the new city builders: CP Rail orders Arbutus corridor community gardens, property, businesses to be removed. It’s rumoured that the trains will be outfitted to roll some coal.

And in other land-grab news: Will Conservatives pay a political price for handing over Granville Island to Port Metro Vancouver? A little background on the Granville Island Trust.

Transit police don’t like it when you tweet about fare checks. They’d rather you join this Facebook group! “We remove hundreds of criminals from the system each year after finding them without fare”. Um, not paying your fare is not a crime. Why am I surprised a cop doesn’t know the law? Also, this.

ESL students in the majority at more than 60 schools in Metro Vancouver. “Use our interactive tool to compare rates of ESL, special needs and gifted children”, so you can decide the appropriate level of outrage that you should be feeling!

Alex G. Tsakumis: Breakdown of Gregor Robertson’s Marriage. “In Vancouver, the fifth estate does not trade on the vicissitudes of human misery for the content of their publication, or broadcast outlet, and neither do members of the political class…” Me, too! I’ll trade on a tweet instead…


Meanwhile, Activists take control of COPE, filling most executive positions. Is “activist” in this context supposed to be an epithet? Maybe the federal NDP could learn a thing or two, instead of praising Tony Blair’s Third Way.

Will new agency help Vancouver’s affordable housing crisis? ”We have some of the worst housing prices in the world in Vancouver. If we want to deal with that, we have to be innovative and quick on our feet…” Um, I’m pretty sure you guys were elected like…6 years ago. Getting on your feet would be a fine start.

Related 1: Tear Down Families: Rentals Tight, a Survival Strategy.

Related 2: Twitter parody account of the week: Trent Boderian.

Bonus: Vancouver Building Age Map.

TEA & TWO SLICES | On Stumblebums And Observing The Real Manbuns Of Vancouver


by Sean Orr | Pete McMartin in the Vancouver Sun: Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside is a ghetto made by outsiders. Did he not watch the video that accompanied his own article? Also, what the hell is a “stumblebum”, derisive anti-FDR slang from the 1930s? “Studies show scattered social housing sites are the healthiest alternative for at-risk populations”. Yeah, but studies also show that not showing the studies that don’t show what you are trying to show lead to the general public never trusting the media. Again, no mention of frozen welfare rates. No mention of the cancellation of the Canada Assistance Plan in ’93. Yet he does have some fairly nuanced points, especially regarding the scourge of NIMBYism. What usually fails in the decentralization argument is an awareness that the DTES fought for its own survival when governments and businesses had abandoned it and that the groups that acted as a band-aid in the interim are not the enemy.

Not nuanced: Money wasted on Vancouver’s DTES. Short version: ex-cop and “security expert” writes a dumb column in the 24hrs newspaper without reading any of the studies that show housing the homeless is less expensive than the status-quo. “The open-air drug bazaar in the East Hastings area that has been prevalent for the past 15 or 20 years didn’t exist when the Vancouver Police Department had control of the streets”. Not true. It seems the role of the police in the author’s eyes looks less like the one that allowed Robert Pickton to flourish and more like this: Heroic NYPD Officer Pursues Knaves on Horseback, Rescues Fair Maiden.

Meanwhile, Young tenants energize Chinatown. Hmm, I wonder if there might possibly be a synonym here for “energize”…

Check Out Vancouver’s Clever Response to Other Cities’ Mean Homeless ‘Repellents’. No thanks. Homes, not benches.

Another day, another Yellow Scare article: Why Vancouver housing is unaffordable and what to do about it. Because no white suburbanite has ever bought and flipped a house, ever. Right?

Related: Mortgages Aren’t Debt, Nearly Half Of Canadians Say. A terrifying prospect.

We’ve even turned it into a fun game: Shelley Fralic: New reality show aims to save Vancouver heritage homes. A great idea for sure, but will it be able to compete with The Real Manbuns of Vancouver?

Regarding the Tsilhqot’in Nation decisionThe claims are just. But the Supreme Court ruling means chaos. “There are British Columbians who will say, ‘Hooray!’ These are the sort who believe that money comes from banks and food comes from supermarkets and don’t understand what pays for health care”. Wrong. We know that our food comes from the land that we stole and that health care comes from governments, not outside corporate interests. As The Tyee writes: “Canada’s timber and petroleum alone have been valued at $33 trillion, yet for some reason the second most wealthy country in the world after Saudi Arabia cannot afford postal delivery, the CBC or teachers”. It’s about ending corporate giveaways, not all resource extraction ever. As Ian Mulgrew comments, “as long as the government negotiates in good faith and is willing to cut a reasonable cheque, any mine, industrial development or pipeline can proceed”.

Supreme Court Of Canada: Wal-Mart Must Pay For Closing Unionized Store. Wow, it’s almost like the justice system is working or something. Too bad the same can’t be said for south of the border.

While I tend to shy away from nationalism, this guy makes me pretty proud to be Canadian: Rob Ford gets into heated confrontation with topless jogger on Canada Day.

The only Vancouver Observer article I have ever actually read and enjoyed: I got a book contract! And I bet you can, too.

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


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!

EAT |  As was noted in another Scout feature, Japantown eatery Cuchillo enjoyed their first birthday this week. Be sure to revisit them for a celebratory taco, but it should also be noted that The Acorn turned two last night. The innovative vegetarian restaurant on Main Street has had a excellent run to date (eg. stellar local reviews; named one of the best new restaurants in Canada by en Route magazine; chef Brian Skinner won the Gold Medal Plates, etc.) and they keep getting better and better. They’re also eye high in killer ingredients at the moment (it being early summer), so the time is especially ripe to check them out again, too.
Acorn | Tues-Sunday 5:30pm till late | 3995 Main St |
Cuchillo | Daily 5pm till late | 261 Powell Street | (604) 559-7585 |

GO ANALOG | Ever sit down in a restaurant or coffee shop and observe how everyone’s eyes are trained on the little glowing screens of smart phones and Macbooks? Of course you have. We all have. And we’ve all done it. Social artist Julien Thomas and Hughes Condon Marler Architects (HCMA) thought it would be interesting to construct a space that was free of cellular/digital signals, a space – get this – that encourages personal connections over digital ones. In order to achieve this the designers installed electromagnetic mesh shields that “prevent the entry or escape of electrical influences” in a pop-up space called Faraday Cafe (a nice side effect of the project is that the shields have the appearance of an art installation of sorts, so the space is an interesting conversation starter in and of itself). Faraday Cafe is open for business starting Wednesday, July 2. They’ll be offering artisanal coffees (Heart, Bows & Arrows, Ritual) during the day and will host pop-up dinner parties (Wednesdays at 7pm), afternoon DJ sets (Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 3pm) and a special storytelling evening on July 15.
July 2 – 16 | Daily 10am – 6pm (closed Sundays) | 434 Columbia St | DETAILS

ARCHITECTURE | Learn about the art deco in the city by taking a Vancouver Heritage Foundation walking tour with historian Maurice Guibord this Friday. From VHF: “The Art Deco style exploded worldwide after the First World War, as a lively and joyful counter to the previous years of constraint and conflict. Impacting fashion, marketing and publishing, its most vivacious implementation was in the world of architecture and design, and Vancouver jumped right into the fray.” Guibord will lead participants through the streets of downtown pointing out distinctive lines, ornamental details, colours and geometric shapes typical of the style. Bonus: the tour ends at one and only Marine Building.
Fri, July 4 | 10-12pm | Meet @ Christ Church Cathedral (Burrard/Georgia) | DETAILS

SKATE JAM | Head out for an evening of skateboarding at the UBC Skate park on Friday. Starting at 4pm there will be freestyle demos, games and prizes for all ages and skill levels. The UBC Skatepark is located on campus at the intersection of Thunderbird Boulevard and Health Sciences Mall.
July 4 | 4-8pm | UBC Skatepark | DETAILS

SAIL | Hustle down to Jericho to get in on a little live music, barbecued food and birthday cake in celebration of Jericho Sailing Centres 40th Anniversary this weekend. A low cost oceanfront community centre with concrete floors dusted in sand, sparsely outfitted instructional classrooms, a straightforward burger and beer menu in the Galley…Jericho doesn’t deal in pretension or exclusivity. It gets right down to the business of enjoying salt air and waves. It’s that simple. The spirit behind small, naturally powered watercraft is an important part of Vancouver culture and heritage, so head down to Jericho to celebrate it!
Sat, July 5 | 11 am–5:30 pm | Jericho Sailing Centre (1300 Discovery) | DETAILS

SECRET SPACES | Theatre Conspiracy is a Vancouver organization that produces theatrical events intended to inspire conversation about international issues and themes. In order to finance their productions the theatre holds a series of intimate dinners that take place in cool, one-of-a-kind locations around town. To wit, this Friday night there will be a Secret Spaces dinner at an architectural studio in Mount Pleasant. Not only will attendees of the “Whiskey Walls & Leather Tables” dinner enjoy cocktails, wine and a six-course dinner (plated by Chef Kevin Mooney of Shaughnessy Restaurant at VanDusen Botanical Gardens), but also the studio itself sounds pretty amazing: an understated, energy efficient conversion of a 1911 butcher shop lined with Douglas Fir that has been sealed with a blend of Canadian whisky and beeswax (we’ve posted pictures and written about it before). Scott & Scott Architects also helped with designing everyone’s favourite Currywurst shop, Bestie, so this definitely isn’t ‘just another venue’. We’re betting that there’ll be some interesting conversation to enjoy on top of the good food and unique location. Support the arts and eat well!
Fri, July 4 | 6:30-11 pm | Scott & Scott Architects’ Studio (Mount Pleasant) | DETAILS

CHILL | Break out the blanket and lawn chair as there’s an outdoor screening of Bend It Like Beckham in Victory Square on Friday night. Pack your own popcorn or pick something tasty up from one of the on-site food trucks. Arrive early to secure a good spot and take part in some of the free pre-movie yoga classes.
July 4 | 9:30pm |Victory Square, Vancouver (Hastings & Cambie) | Free | DETAILS |

MAKE | Learn to make saké this Saturday. Mogu Mogu Goute (a local blog focused on simple, healthy Japanese food) will set up at District Main Garden Patio to teach the basics about equipment and ingredients required to make ‘Doburoku’ (a farmer’s style rice ale or saké). Learn about the different rice grades, sanitization precautions, the fermentation process, and how to monitor and adjust your sake for taste. $40 includes a Doburoku starter kit containing koji, dry yeast, rice, and cheese cloth.
Sat, July 5 | 7-8:30pm| District Main Garden Patio (4453 Main St.) | $40 | DETAILS

FOREST LOVE | As far as forests go, Stanley Park is a bit of a loner. Isolated from other forests by city and ocean, its just a little different from the other kids in the school yard. Take a little time out on Sunday to learn about the characteristics of ‘fragmented forests’ and the challenges that they face. Take a walk with a knowledgable Stanley Park Ecology Centre volunteer and be brought up to speed on how the unique setting of Stanley Park requires special management. You will also find out what you can do to make sure that this beautiful part of our city remains strong and healthy.
Sun, July 6 | 1:30pm | Stanley Park Nature House on Lost Lagoon | $10 | DETAILS

GIG | Singer-songwriter Sharon Van Etten is in town from Brooklyn to play a set at the Rickshaw in support of her new album Are We There. We saw Van Etten play at Zulu Records a few years back and she was fantastic. Strong character, mellow but not passive; her music is as great on a Sunday morning with a cup of coffee as it is full blast on a road trip. Stoked for this show!
Sun, July 6 | Doors 8pm | The Rickshaw (254 E Hastings St) | $18 | DETAILS  

Check the Globe & Mail every Thursday for our Special Weekend Edition of the Scout List


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 Spoiling Dive Bars & The Smoking Ruin Of Our Weed Economy


by Sean Orr | Peter MacKay’s emails to staff: Moms change diapers, Dads form leaders. Women everywhere would be outraged, that is if they weren’t so busy running around changing diapers and making home-cooked meals…

Related: Are you suffering from Rushing Woman’s Syndrome? Yes, The Province newspaper just pathologized the modern mother. It is a sickness, ladies, and you need psychological help (and no, it has nothing to do with sustaining a a lifestyle of conspicuous consumption). Related tweet:

Eureka! Participants with mental illness, addictions thrive after being given apartments: five-year national study. They needed five years to come to that conclusion? “The findings mean residents should not be afraid of social housing mixed into neighbourhoods throughout the city”. The findings also revealed that residents should not be total NIMBY assholes who only ever look out for their best interests and harbour irrational fears about the value of their property.

Railtown: On Track to Gentrify? Wherein Vancouver Magazine reveals itself to be a recently divorced 55 year old man in a leased Porsche sadly cruising the DTES after being passed over for the role of Captain Obvious

Legalized marijuana in Washington state could hurt B.C.’s multibillion-dollar pot economy. Our mainstream media finally figures it out four years after Douglas Haddow did.

Or, What I Learned About Capitalism By Walking Into A Starbucks And Screaming ‘Capitalism!’ At The Barista Over And Over Until They Had To Call The Police.

“You can be rich too, you just gotta believe really hard”: S**t Harper Did Punks Tories With Action Plan Parody Website.

Smoked bannock and mirrors: City of Vancouver formally declares city is on unceded Aboriginal territory. “Coun. Andrea Reimer of Vision Vancouver introduced the motion and said she isn’t concerned about possible legal ramifications of declaring the city is on unceded territory because Vancouver is not involved in treaty negotiations and has no such authority over land”. Which is to say the move is about as impactful as declaring Vancouver a unicorn-friendly sanctuary.

More good news that I’m too cynical to properly enjoy: Supreme Court expands land-title rights in unanimous ruling. “If the Aboriginal group does not consent to the use, the government’s only recourse is to establish that the proposed incursion on the land is justified”. Justified, eh? So…like, a pipeline?

Vancity Buzz tries its hand at Columbusing with potentially terrifying consequences: 8 Must-try Dive Bars in Vancouver. Jackalope a dive bar? They just opened a couple of months ago and serve kale eggs benedict, craft beer, and Belgian waffles. What’s wrong with you? Try West Bar, Grand Union, Funky Winkerbeans, The Savoy, Balmoral, or The Empress. Or don’t. Actually, please don’t.

Canada Scraps Work Permit Requirements for Touring Musicians. Now if we can only get the USA to reciprocate.

Bonus: SFU Profs reading mean reviews about themselves.

HOODS | Eating Up The North Shore’s Tasty Summertime Night Market At The Shipyards


by Robyn Yager | Sometimes the North Shore gets the short end of the stick. Sure, it’s recognized for Quarry Rock, the dense forests of the Capilano River, Park Royal, Grouse Mountain, and plenty of excellence besides, but the idea of having to cross the water can be a little off-putting for some on this side of the bridge.

And it’s their loss, frankly, as there’s some pretty awesome stuff happening over there, stuff that’s well worth the 15-minute Seabus ride over, like the Friday Night Market at the Shipyards. Rivalling Vancouver’s Food Truck Fest, the Shipyards’ night market offer up a world of foods, a farmer’s market, lots of music, locally produced art, a beer garden, and an entire pier where you can sit and enjoy the sights, smells, and sounds of a North Shore summer.

Our recommendations include the Didi’s Greek food truck for a free-run chicken souvlaki wrap; an avocado lime pop from Johnny’s Pops; a bag of mini donuts (if you’re still aching for something doughy and sweet); a beer from Green Leaf Brewing Company at the beer garden; and a stroll down the pier as the sun goes down. If you’re still looking for something to do after the night market, catch a flick at the Esplanade movie theatre three blocks away from the Shipyards.

Check it out on Friday nights, from 5-10pm at Shipyards Plaza – Wallace Mews.


TEA & TWO SLICES | On Making A Mess Of “Happy Hour” And Spilling Irony Everywhere


by Sean OrrOil spill clean-up ship hit sandbar en route to government news conference in Vancouver. What the article doesn’t mention is that the ship accidentally spilled 36 megatons of unrefined irony.

Postmedia Gets Away With Running Unmarked Oil Advertorials. I’d hardly say they got away with it. It made it onto Tea & Two Slices after all! “Readers expect news organizations to maintain their first loyalty to citizens…” Well, there’s your first mistake right there.

A relationship cut short in B.C. with one fell swoop by Enbridge. The author makes it seem like the Haisla and Enbridge were walking down the aisle in holy matrimony until some jerk stood up and yelled “Yo, I fucked the bride! Hahaha!”

Why Are BC’s Natural Resource Officers Buying Bulletproof Vests? Especially when what they really need are leaflet-proof vests.

BC’s formal response to the mayors’ transit plan. Reads like: “Aw, thank guys for cute report but forgot include MOAR LANES…”

The Problem Isn’t Vancouver’s Astronomical Housing Costs— It’s the People Who Buy Them. I only glanced through this Op-Ed because I first “Command-F” searched it for mentions of CMHC, mortgage, wages, and welfare and found no matches. Also, the author is dreaming if be thinks Amazon will pay all its Vancouver employees 100k.

A premium on logic: Unhappy hour comes to B.C. pubs that must now raise prices. Ah yes, the old bureaucratic cash grab under the guise of public safety. As if hipsters and winos aren’t just going to drink in the alley behind the bar instead…

Quote of the week from Nicholas Ellan:

Tonight the City of Vancouver held its first annual Awards of Excellence. Two “Freedom of the City” awards for special achievement were presented: one to Judy Graves for her tireless and selfless work as a housing advocate for Vancouver’s homeless; and one to Jim Pattison, for being rich as fuck.

I love that this is a thing: Grouse Grind: Mountaintop resort profits from a trail paid for by Metro Vancouver taxpayers.

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