VANCOUVER WOULD BE COOLER IF #200: It Used Sheep To Replace Noisy Lawnmowers

 (photo: Bertoz) The City Council of Paris, France is launching a pilot project that might eventually see sheep mowing the lawns of the City’s many parks and public green spaces:

Four sheep from Ouessent Island, off the coast of Brittany, were selected to take over a gardener’s job, and also for their small size—they stand barely over two-feet tall, and are considered hardy and too small to be eaten—which makes them easier to transport between sites.

Over the next six months, the grass-guzzling living ‘lawn-mowers’ need to keep a 2,000-square meter grass patch neatly trimmed, as a trial. And if the low-tech program (known as eco-grazing) is successful, sheep will be seen replacing mechanical lawnmowers throughout the French capital’s public spaces.

The black shaggy sheep are seen as an environmentally-friendly alternative, as they reduce cost, noise and air pollution, and the use of pesticides and fuel—and they help fertilize plants as well.

“Motorized lawn mowers make a lot of noise, and they also consume fossil fuels and sometimes electricity,” Fabienne Giboudeaux, Paris City Hall’s director of Green Spaces told BBC. “It’s not very rewarding work for gardeners, pushing these machines around. It’s tiring.”

When reached for comment on the local viability of such a project, Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson simply said “Baaaaah.” (ok, not really)

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DINER: Jackie Ellis Of “Beaucoup Bakery” Travels To Paris And Eats (Almost) All Of It

Scout will be reporting from France next month, so when we heard that Beaucoup Bakery owner Jackie Ellis was going ahead of us, we asked her to keep tabs on the top 25 edibles that she came across in her adventures. “After 20 pastry shops, 13 restaurants, 2 pastry courses, and a Valrhona chocolate factory tour,” she says, “these are the results of my 2 weeks of gastronomic research in Paris.” Bon appetit after the jump…. Read more

VANCOUVER WOULD BE COOLER IF #197: It Had Its Own Hand-Stitched CityScape Quilt

January 31, 2013 

(via) We love these hand-stitched, 100% cotton city quilts by HapticLab. They do San Fran, LA, Chicago, Paris (above), London, New Orleans, New York City, Boston, Philadelphia, and Washington DC, but not Vancouver. Get on it.

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VANCOUVER WOULD BE COOLER IF #191: False Creek Had A Giant Trampoline Bridge

October 16, 2012 

(via Design Boom) “Installed near the Bir-Hakeim bridge [in Paris], the conception is formed out of inflatable modules, like giant life-preservers, 30 meters in diameter. In the central part of each ring, a trampoline mesh is stretched. The floating buoys, fabricated in PVC membrane, are attached together by cord to form a stable and self-supporting ensemble. Each module under tension – filled with 3700 cubic meters of air – developing in space with an arch-like form. Designed entirely of light materials, the project crosses the Seine at a specific point; it can of course adapt to larger or smaller dimensions at other sites [my italics].”

How many fewer people would commute by car across False Creek’s three bridges if a fourth was built and it was a giant trampoline? Who wouldn’t want to safely hilariously bounce across it? This being Vancouver, helmets would be mandatory, but it would still be the best rush hour ever! Look into it, Gregor et al. Earn your money today.

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It’s 5am And The Streets Of 1978 Paris Beg For Your Ferrariness

This is what happened obscenely early one August morning in 1978 when French film director Claude Lelouch bolted a camera to the front bumper of a Ferrari and had a still anonymous professional Formula 1 driver tear through the heart of Paris at death-defying speeds to go meet up with his girl (yeah, it ends with a hug). Read more