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FRIDAY, DECEMBER 13, 2013 Vol. 104 No. 100 • Established 1908

Adaptive snow sports

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WEEKEND EDITION

THE VOICE OF VANCOUVER NEIGHBOURHOODS

NEWS: Ramada rage 20/ OPINION: Collapsing COPE 10 photo Dan Toulgoet

Dreck the halls

OUR ANNUAL CHRISTMAS GIFT GUIDE TO THE UNIQUE, WEIRD AND JUST PLAIN WRONG

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F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

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news City won’t interfere with casino application CRITICS CALL PARAGON PLANS WORRISOME MIKE HOWELL Staff writer

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he ruling Vision Vancouver council will not interfere with a Las Vegasbased casino company’s desire to build a $535-million entertainment complex adjacent to B.C. Place Stadium, despite a request from an anti-casino coalition. Vision Coun. Kerry Jang said council will not delay Paragon Holdings from having its application heard Dec.16 by the city’s development permit board. Paragon wants to move its Edgewater Casino operation at the Plaza of Nations and build a new gambling facility at 39 Smithe St. The Vancouver Not Vegas! coalition called Tuesday for council to delay Paragon’s application until a “comprehensive public review and implementation of a harm reduction strategy” is completed. “We’re not interfering,” Jang told the Courier Wednesday. “Everything that [the coalition] asked for has been done — two years ago — and is currently being done now.” Jang said council made it clear in April 2011, when it voted unanimously to reject Paragon’s initialproposalformoreslotsandgamingtables, that it didn’t support an expansion of gambling.

photo Dan Toulgoet

Sandy Garossino, co-founder of Vancouver Not Vegas! says the permit process involving a proposed $535-million entertainment complex adjacent to B.C. Place lacks transparency. At the same meeting, council agreed to a moratorium on applications to expand gambling until the provincial government and the B.C. Lottery Corporation undertakes a “comprehensive public consultation” on expanded gambling in Vancouver. Council also recently ordered city staff to conduct a public health review of all Vancouver gambling facilities, including Edgewater, Hastings Racecourse and bingo halls. The review is the result of a motion Jang brought before council in light of the provincial health officer’s report on problem gambling that called for government to lessen the harm caused by gambling. Sandy Garossino, co-founder of Vancou-

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ver Not Vegas!, said the public needs more information about Paragon’s development application before it goes to the permit board. Garossino said the increased floor space in the plans and the opportunity for a future council to expand the number of slots and tables in a new facility is worrisome. “This application being brought in December in the rush of Christmas when members of the public have had no real notice this is taking place — no opportunity to speak to it, no transparency about what is going on and what is expected for the city — offends our sense of fair play,” Garossino said at a press conference held Tuesday in Strathcona.

The coalition includes former B.C. Supreme Court justice Ian Pitfield, architect Bing Thom, artist Brian Jungen, former NPA city councillor Peter Ladner, writer George Bowering and several university professors and research scientists, including Gerald Thomas, the lead author of provincial health officer Dr. Perry Kendall’s report on problem gambling. Paragon’s new application goes before the development permit board Dec. 16 because of council’s decision in April 2011. Though council rejected Paragon’s plan to double the number of its gaming tables from 75 to 150 and almost triple its 600 slots to 1,500, council gave Paragon the option to move to the Smithe Street site and build a new casino — as long as it kept the current complement of tables and slots. Paragon eventually followed through with that option and is proceeding with its next step to build a 700,000 sq. foot complex that features a casino spread over two floors, two hotels, a gym, a spa and restaurants. Paragon has described the $535-million complex as a “world-class urban resort” that will also feature a conference centre, retail space and five levels of underground parking able to accommodate 1,200 vehicles. The property belongs to B.C. Pavilion Corporation, or PavCo, which signed a lease agreement with Paragon that includes a 70year term at $3 million per year. PavCo is a Crown corporation. mhowell@vancourier.com twitter.com/Howellings

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

news Gay councillor to take mayor’s place in Sochi TIM STEVENSON WILL REPRESENT VANCOUVER AT 2014 WINTER OLYMPICS SANDRA THOMAS Staff writer

V

ision Vancouver Coun. Tim Stevenson will represent the City of Vancouver at the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Russia, despite that country’s sometimes violent track record on LGBTQ rights. Vision Mayor Gregor Robertson made the announcement Wednesday, after much discussion on how the city should respond to recent events in Russia. In June, Russian president Vladimir Putin signed a bill classifying “homosexual propaganda” as pornography. The new bill criminalizes public discussion of homosexuality, especially with foreigners. As a result, Russian members of the LGBT community took to the streets in what started out as peaceful protests but quickly turned into bloody clashes with police. Stevenson, who is gay, told the Courier his goal is to address the International Olympic Committee and convince members that human rights regarding sexual orientation must

photo Dan Toulgoet

Coun. Tim Stevenson (right) hopes to address the International Olympic Committee about getting the rights of homosexuals enshrined in its charter. be enshrined into its charter. “It’s too late for Russia,” said Stevenson, who will represent Vancouver in Sochi as the deputy mayor. “But maybe if this had already been in place, Russia might not have even bid on the Games.” Stevenson said because Vancouver was the host city of the last Winter Olympic Games in 2010, it has a greater responsibility to speak out against human rights violations. Stevenson will speak to members of the IOC about ensur-

ing a “Pride House” is created at every Olympic Games going forward. During the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver, Pride House acted as a safe space for LGBTQ athletes and visitors from countries with laws against homosexuality. The Pride House locations in Vancouver and Whistler also offered services for LGBTQ visitors from those countries seeking refugee status. Joining Stevenson on the trip to Sochi in February are former Vancouver Olympic Com-

mittee project manager Maureen Douglas and Pride House co-founder Dean Nelson. The contingent will arrive in Sochi several days before the start of the Games, which is when members of the IOC typically meet and when Stevenson hopes to address the organization. Their trip is paid through private contributions from a fund created by the city and kicked off by $25,000 donations each from realtor Bob Rennie and developer Peter Wall. Both have contributed large sums of money to past Vision Vancouver campaigns. Stevenson doesn’t plan to break any laws while in Russia, but when asked if his goal of publicly addressing the IOC with his concerns might be in conflict with that country’s new “homosexual propaganda” bill, he hesitated. “I hope not, but whether they interpret it way and throw me in the gulag will have to be seen,” said Stevenson of the infamous forced labour camps of the Soviet era. “If that happens, send me Purdy’s chocolates. I like the dark one.” Stevenson is well aware of the dangers he could face as an openly gay man speaking publicly in favour of LGBTQ rights in Russia. “But I know I’ll have at least one person praying for my safety while I’m there,” said Stevenson of his husband Gary Paterson, who is a United Church minister. “I’ll be there as the deputy mayor of the past Olympic city and hope I’ll be treated in accordance.” sthomas@vancourier.com twitter.com/sthomas10

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news Rent resentment 12TH & CAMBIE with Mike Howell

M

y piece last week about the city’s efforts to get developers to build so-called affordable market rental housing in Vancouver touched a nerve with readers. I figured it would. That’s because I indicated the cost of projected rents for various projects being built around this world-class city; they’re not cheap. A city staff report said fees will be waived for developments where the agreed upon average rents for initial occupancy do not exceed the following specified rents by more than 10 per cent: • $1,443 per month for a studio unit. • $1,517 per month for a one-bedroom. • $2,061 for a two-bedroom. • $2,743 for a three-bedroom. Reader Bob Quicke had this to say about the cost: “One look at the figures quoted in that report as acceptable standards of living made me wonder whether the population growth of Vancouver area suburbs is fuelled, in no small part, by the inability of families to find viable rental units within our city.” He’s got a point there. And you may have noticed in the morning and afternoon rush hours that many of those people who can’t afford Vancouver — but still have to work here — have to endure a car trip from hell, or pay for an expensive Westcoast Express trip, or stand like cattle in clogged buses and SkyTrains or jump on a bike and pedal and pedal and pedal. The days of choosing a neighbourhood in which to live are long gone — unless, of course, you’ve got a few bucks. Instead, many potential homeowners and renters settle in a neighbourhood based on affordability and, more directly, what’s available. So what exactly is the City of Vancouver’s

definition of affordable? First know that more than 50 per cent of households in Vancouver are renters. Also, Vancouver provides 46 per cent of rental housing in the Lower Mainland and 27 per cent for the entire province. But if you’ve ever tried to find a place to rent in Vancouver, you know there’s not a lot out there to plunk down your hard-earned cold cash for. And it sure doesn’t help when Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation reports indicate rent went up 36 per cent between 2002 and 2012 in the city. So how the heck does city staff come up with the cost of those proposed rents I indicated near the top of this entry? Answer: Three key factors. Number one: Staff compare proposed rents to average market rents from CMHC rental market reports for comparable rental housing, usually newer rental buildings in the same area. Number two: Staff compare the proposed rents to the average monthly costs of ownership in the same area. Number three: Staff calculate the annual income required to afford the proposed rents and consider 30 per cent of income dedicated to rent to be an acceptable benchmark. By the way, as regular readers will know, the Mayor’s Task Force on Housing Affordability identified a target household income range of $21,500 to $86,500 for the city’s affordable housing initiatives. So what do all these numbers mean? Here’s some breaking news: It’s expensive to live in Vancouver. But as a staff report pointed out, it’s much cheaper to rent than buy a home. The example staff provided was paying $390,000 for a two-bedroom East Side condo, with $40,000 down, for a monthly mortgage cost of $2,550. Income required: $102,000. To rent a new two-bedroom East Side apartment, with a deposit of $2,200, the monthly cost would be $1,455. Income required: $65,000. Good luck, everybody. mhowell@vancourier.com

F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

news

Ming Sun building wins wrecking ball reprieve SITE ONE OF THE 20 OLDEST BUILDINGS IN VANCOUVER GAVIN FISHER Contributing writer

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he City of Vancouver is tearing down one wall of the historic Ming Sun building in the 400-block of Powell Street, but the rest of the building will be left intact — for now. “Once that is done we will revisit the siuation to see what the structural conditions are below the side of the brick that’s falling off the side of the building,” said Sadhu Johnston, Vancouver’s deputy city manager. This has given the Ming Sun Benevolent Society, which owns the building, a few more days to come up with a plan to save the building. “If they are unable to do that, the demolition will proceed after that,” said Johnston. The building, which encompasses 437-441 Powell St. is one of the 20 oldest buildings in Vancouver, and was once owned by a prominent Japanese-Canadian family. On Nov. 15 the city had ordered the demolition of the building based on public safety concerns. The Ming Sun Benevolent Society later asked for it to be preserved because of its heritage value. The city gave the society until Monday, Dec. 9 to address the safety concerns of the brick wall on the west side of the building. On Tuesday, Dec. 10, city crews set up scaffolding to begin removing bricks from the west wall and chimney. Tom Chow, the owner of Double Happiness Foods, located on the west side of the Ming Sun building, said the east wall of the Ming Sun building collapsed in July. Chow sent a report to the city concerning the safety of the brick wall. “If it happened to the eastern wall it could happen to the western wall,” he said. David Wong, spokesperson for the Ming Sun Benevolent Society, said the Ming Sun building was damaged by the demolition of another building, on the east side, on July 24. Johnston denied these claims, and said the east wall of

photo Gavin Fisher

Burst sprinkler pipes caused flooding in the Ming Sung building Dec. 10, the same day city crews were getting ready to knock down one if its walls. the Ming Sun building fell onto the neighbouring building. “This building is decrepit and completely unmaintained,” said Johnston. The residents of the Ming Sun building, and the Instant Coffee Artist Collective which occupied the storefront space, had to vacate the building after the demolition of the neighbouring building. David Wong said that the empty building has been subject to what he believes is deliberate vandalism over the past few months. “Whoever is doing the vandalism is targeting the vandalism.” On Tuesday evening, after city crews began preparing to take down the west wall, sprinkler pipes in the building

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burst, causing flooding. Wong called the flooding is “suspicious,” and said the sprinklers had been drained last fall. Meanwhile the future of the Ming Sun building reamins in question. Wong said he hopes the Ming Sun Benevolent Society and the City of Vancouver can reach an agreement to preserve the building. “We want to work with the city because this is a very historically significant building.” James Johnstone, a house history researcher in Vancouver, is critical of the city’s approach to the Ming Sun building. “Vision’s name — Vision — just seems to not ring true, because they have no vision with regards to heritage in the city. It’s not just a little old building, it’s got lots to teach us.” info@gavinfisher.ca twitter.com/fisher_gavin

F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

news Hellish hotel finds new life as haven Staff writer

T

he drug dealer doesn’t live there anymore. He was evicted. But he was on the corner last Friday morning, lurking. Inside the old building in which he lived, there now exists surveillance cameras and an alarm system. The security provisions allowed

“Jenna” to enjoy the serenity of the same morning as she walked along a quiet hallway in her pajamas. “We’re warm and off the street and safe and we actually have a home,” she said from inside the former Seaview single-room-occupancy hotel in the 300block Alexander Street. It was a different story for Jenna in the summer. She pointed down a narrow hallway to a room

were being brought in and tortured — head shaved, lit on fire, raped, assaulted,” said Abbott, whose nonprofit along with the help of the Vancouver Police Department rid the hotel of the gang, including the dealer hanging outside the building Friday. The women, she added, have been afraid to pursue charges against the men for fear of retribution. Moving in to the same hotel where she was tortured was a concern for Jenna — who slept the first night with her light on — but her options were limited. The police continue to work with Atira to ensure

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the hotel doesn’t revert to the horrible place it was. “The VPD have been all over this and been absolutely fabulous to work with through this process — they are keeping us safe,” Abbott said. The building, renamed the Empress Rooms, has become a refuge for Jenna and 35 other women who would otherwise be living on the street. The hotel got a new coat of paint, new floors and a renovated kitchen. Tenants, whose rent is $375 per month, are guaranteed at least two meals per day and have access to professionals for whatever health or personal problems need to be addressed. The B.C. government provided $350,000 for the renovations and manage-

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where she said dealers installed a locked metal gate. Inside, she said, they tortured her and other women. Young people, she said, also died of drug overdoses in the circa 1912 hotel. “Now it’s totally done a 180 and it’s clean,” said Jenna, who was homeless for two years. The building’s history was notorious, or “profoundly checkered,” as Janice Abbott, the CEO of Atira Women’s Resource Society, described in a tour. Atira now manages the privately owned hotel. “There were a group of alleged drug dealers who lived here and women

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ment of the building. The money helped pay to have two staff on duty around the clock and employ a security guard. Attorney General Suzanne Anton toured the hotel Friday and said the government is committed to the safety of vulnerable women. Anton visited the Empress Rooms on the National Day of Remembrance and a day where temperatures dipped below zero degrees Celsius. “The goal here is to help women get into more permanent housing and into better circumstances,” said Anton, standing in the hotel’s kitchen. “That need is always around. People come and go and they have different circumstances in their lives, so it’s very important to have a safe place for women to get themselves back into a better personal space.” The demand for housing for women is so great in the Downtown Eastside that Abbott said “we could probably fill this building a couple of times over. And if we took into consideration women who are living in unsafe buildings elsewhere in the community — yes, the need is huge.” mhowell@vancourier.com twitter.com/Howellings

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COPE heading toward oblivion

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nd then there was none. Last Sunday we got the word: the only COPE candidate elected last time round, Vancouver School Board trustee Allan Wong, had quit his party to join Vision. The hollowing out of that once influential left-of-centre COPE continued this week when prominent West End activist and former COPE park board candidate Brent Granby decided to follow Wong. (My colleague Sandra Thomas is reporting the details on page 13.) Even before Granby announced his move, he was showing his new colours: While Randy Helten and the West End Neighbours were kvetching about Vision’s West End Community Plan a few weeks back, Granby was annoying COPE hardliners, who see Helten as an ally, by singing the plan’s praises. Granby is just the latest high-profile person to abandon the 45-year-old civic party, which reached its peak of power by finally winning a solid majority at council, school board and park board behind Mayor Larry Campbell in 2002. Other notables to leave include second-generation COPE member and member of the party’s executive Donalda Greenwell-Baker, former NDP MLA David Chudnovsky and former COPE council candidate R.J. Aquino. One-time Green Party leader Stuart Parker also left the executive over disagreement with the party’s direction. And then there is a raft of disgruntled rank and file members who have taken a walk. COPE’s current careening-towards-electoral oblivion began, in the view of three-term COPE councillor David Cadman’s, just prior to the last civic election. Cadman who says, “I’m observing but not engaging” noted that’s when another former COPE councillor, Tim Louis, stacked the party’s September 2011 nomination meeting in his own favour and got Cadman bounced as a candidate. As a result of that stunning move and Louis’s decided lack of enthusiasm about COPE’s alliance with Vision, some perfectly good COPE candidates, including a number of incumbents, got passed up by the electorate. Cadman says Wong had the advantage of attracting the significant Chinese vote and was the sole survivor. Cadman says COPE became an organization where there was a constant “fracas going on amongst the members. By the time you got to an election you had a divided leadership.” This past April, Louis managed a takeover of the COPE executive, which is now committed, among other things, to running against Vision. Not all those who have departed have migrated over to Vision. Chudnovsky is notable among the free agents. He has serious reservations about the city’s ruling party. They include what he considers its “failure” to deal with the issue of affordable housing. He also says there is a “growing frustration” among community activists in Vancouver that Vision does not “genuinely consult.” It is a pattern of behaviour, he says, including the party’s treatment of community centres, community plans and the Little Mountain Housing project. People present their views, believe they are being consulted yet, in the end, “things come out of nowhere” from the city. Regardless of his reservation about Vision, Chudnovsky says COPE “no longer speaks for the whole city.” And it is neither “respectful” nor “useful” to the city. It has simply become the personal hobby horse for Louis and his allies. No matter where Chudnovsky and the rest end up, COPE and Louis have a major problem: Money. COPE was originally founded by lawyer and city councillor Harry Rankin and the Vancouver and District Labour Council. It has been bankrolled primarily by the labour movement ever since. Last time out major unions insisted COPE form an alliance with Vision if it wanted their money. Now, influential union leaders like CUPE’s Paul Faoro are clear that if COPE and Louis run a full slate and a mayoral candidate against Vision and Gregor Robertson union “money will not roll.” ••• In other news of the dearly departed, a staffer within the city’s communications department calculated that department’s turnover rate. The organization, which has grown from a half dozen to about 20 staffers under Vision, has become more of a brick wall than an open window when it comes to providing information to we ink stained wretches and digital drudges. It has also seen a whopping 30 people come and go from its payroll under Mayor Gregor Robertson’s watch. agarr@vancourier.com

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F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

WE WANT YOUR OPINION Hate it or love it? We want to know... really, we do! Reach us by email: letters@vancourier.com

A quantum Xmas card from a columnist’s future

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ear readers, Greetings from December, 2030. The Christmas tree has been decorated, the dog has antlers on, and there’s a cup of mulled wine and a jellyfish sandwich waiting on my writing desk. And thanks to Beijing Telecom, I can communicate backwards in time with q-mail. Monsanto’s unfortunate Ebola/E. coli mixup of 2028 is now yesterday’s news. As some of you will one day remember, a continental outbreak of hemorrhagic fever sent zombies lurching across the land in search of retail therapy at long-gone malls (memories of brick-and-mortar shopping die hard). Drone strikes are picking off the last of the Canadian Undead as I dictate this. My partner doesn’t care much for the sound of drones, but I find the buzz from above soothing: a background hum of security courtesy the military-industrial toy shop (yes, I’ve become a bit more conservative with age, news which will horrify my younger, touchy-feely self). Still, I occasionally feel nostalgic for a time when drone flights were fewer in number. The ongoing accidents on the Matternet are troubling. In fact, my drone-flown book from Amazon.ca collided on Black Friday with someone’s cannabis package vectoring in from Washington State. Ironically, I had ordered a copy of From Jail to Judiciary by Canadian Supreme Court justice Mark Emery (sometimes the universe will just arrange these weird little juxtapositions, for whatever reason). Speaking of accidents, three weeks ago I slipped on some ice and broke my hip. Our home 3D printer was on the fritz, so I arrived at VGH without a replacement pelvic part in hand, which made for extra paperwork and a prolonged wait in the hospital’s McDonaldland. (This reminds me of an old joke. “THEN: getting out to a new, hip joint. NOW: getting a new hip joint.”) I’m OK now, but I’m not big on aging for a number of reasons. For example, I can’t bear to part with obsolescent gadgets. I still wear my Google glasses on walks around the block, undeterred by shouts of “Ebenezer” from the neighbourhood kids and their volley of snowballs. That ballistic risk is year-round I might add, now that global cooling has gone from pseudoscience to Ice Age reality. Who’d have thought back in 2013 that industries would get credits to pump more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere to fend off glaciation and a return of The Ice Capades? Where was I? Oh yes — my old school, search-engine spectacles. I could never get with the global brain implant craze. Yours Truly already had a sense of foreboding back in 2010, when Google’s then-CEO Eric Schmidt said brain implants would be an example of something crossing the company’s “creepy line,” adding, “at least for the moment until the technology gets better.” Look it up, I’m not kidding. You still have time to determine your future. That goes double for shutting down the Large Hadron Collider before Skrulls discover it as a galactic portal. Though I grumble and curse like most seniors — especially about the chill factor and the outrageous drone/hipstercopter accident rate — I still think Vancouver is a far better place to live than anywhere south of the border. After red state zombies devoured Secretary of State Gaga and her staff, they formed a Political Action Committee and went negative with attack ads. As a result, the Congressional Undead have been granted immunity from Terminator strikes by President Bezos — the most disturbing American development since the crucifixion of Russell Brand at Madison Square Gardens in 2025. Here in B.C., we may have cold-adapted pine beetles the size of bricks, but at least we’re not using proton bazookas to fight off huge, ambulatory jellyfish and sentient barnacles, like Japan’s coast guard. Perhaps it’s the background radiation, but things seem to happen faster now than when I was younger, which is not always such a bad thing. As you know, it took years for the Canadian Royal Mint to take the penny back. What you don’t know yet is that it took under a year to take the nickel back, and then just two months for legislation to take out Nickelback. So a toast of mulled wine to you, my loyal readers of the past. Happy holidays, and may you one day shop until “they” drop (the last remaining zombies of Upper Cascadia, that is). geoffolson.com

GEOFF OLSON

LOWE OFF THE MARK ON DTES JAYWALKING

To the editor: Re: “Lowe tells VPD to reduce ticketing in DTES,” Dec. 6. Police Complaint Commissioner Stan Lowe is lost, the mayor is manipulated and Pivot is poison to the truth about jaywalking in the Downtown Eastside for both pedestrians and drivers. I have independently served people on the streets and in the alleys of the Downtown Eastside four times a week, 52 weeks of the year for the past 10 years. Jaywalking may be a minor offense but it can have life or death consequences for guilty pedestrians and horrific trauma and haunting memories for innocent drivers, like me. I know the area. I drive very slowly on Hastings. Within the past two months, while serving I have almost injured two people who ran out onto Hastings Street from Insite in front of my car, with them ending up sprawled on my car hood and me hard braking, pulse racing, like a heart attack and sweating blood. No warning at all, no use

of the expensive new pedestrian-activated street crossing a few meters away, and thank God, no deaths, yet. Support the VPD enforcement of jaywalking in the Downtown Eastside for the health and safety of both pedestrians and drivers.

Clark Katona, Vancouver

EDUCATION THE KEY TO END RACISM To the editor:

Re: “South Africans gather to honour Nelson Mandela,” Dec. 10. Racial tolerance and forgiveness are perhaps the most profound message that a deceased person can leave behind as a legacy, and Nelson Mandela left just that. Over the years, I’ve observed that, regardless of nationality or ethnicity, a person’s level of formal education (though not to presume that of the late Mandela) tends to proportionally reflect his/her capacity for racial harmony and the resultant peace with oneself. Yes, unfortunately a person’s past rearing environment significantly involving a vilely racist

parent or guardian filling the child’s mind with racial bigotry can act as a formidable hindrance to such desirable racial harmony. However, along with (especially higher) education can, over time, the seed of tolerance can spawn and grow large to reason one’s twisted thinking away from childhood-ingrained racist sentiment. Furthermore, not readily known by the general populace is that not only does such education fill the mind with knowledge, it also notably contributes to the development of the brain’s ‘hardwiring’ thus enabling greater cerebral function potential. To advance Mandela’s legacy, the ultimate goal of humanity’s evolution into a world free of racism, I’m convinced that foremost there needs to be universal access to education — ideally, of course, on a global scale. All of humankind’s minds need to and should be filled with significant knowledge before they’re tragically filled and thus corrupted with racially disharmonious, humankind disintegrating poison. Frank Sterle, Jr, White Rock

ON YOUR MIND ONLINE COURIER COLUMN: “Want Vision to listen? Try court action,” Dec. 6. Fred Irvine: I think that the mayor either did not take Philosophy 100 or did not learn what was taught in that class. To say that it is not necessary to respond to a critic’s comments because he might run against the mayor in the next election is a classic case of an ad hominen argument. COURIER STORY: “City of Vancouver hopes developers buy into Rental 100,” Dec. 2. lrothney: Rental 100 is a farce and is just another way for the city to acquire money from developers. Where is the AFFORDABLE housing. The city just keeps pushing people out of their homes. COURIER STORY: “Flu shots still available, says health officer” Dec. 5. Ruth Carolyn: So were are supposed to “embrace the spirit of the policy” are we? Yes I often embrace the spirit of fascism and scientifically unsubstantiated rhetoric being shoved down my throat. Don’t kid yourself people, this policy is about industry and public relations, NOT protecting our vulnerable. The flu vaccine, unlike credible vaccines, has a serious public relations problem due to its dismal performance and inept tracking of influenza, which we are lied to about its prevalence, Cases in Canada are more like 450 per year, not 2000 to 8000 — see CBC’s “Flu Death Reality Check” by Kelly Crowe for the Health Canada and industry collusion on this matter. Criminal! B.C. is the only province dumb enough to fall for this sanctimonious and paternalistic drivel. COURIER STORY: “Vancouver Dodgeball traps animals from Discovery Channel,” Dec. 9. Vancouver Dodgeball @vdldodgeball: What a week! Articles in both @VIAwesome and @ VanCourierNews. Blessed to have such support from the community and beyond. COURIER STORY: “NFL salutes Vancouver coach” Nov. 14. ajb: Coach Pauls has volunteered countless hours for many years in the support of amateur football in the province of British Columbia. He has helped raise the standard for coaching, commitment, and selflessness in the pursuit of excellence for young players in this province. He is truly an inspiring individual and a tireless leader — of which we can all feel proud.

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

EVENT OR COMMUNITY NEWS WE SHOULD KNOW ABOUT? 604-738-1411 | sthomas@vancourier.com

TennysonpupilsshowtheirChristmasspirit COMMUNITY CALENDAR with Sandra Thomas

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he best part of donating to the Courier’s annual Christmas Drive for Directions Youth Services is “being nice to teenagers.” That was the message from just one of the 12 students from the Lord Tennyson Elementary out-of-school care program who dropped by the Courier office Wednesday afternoon in a flurry of scarves, warm coats and toques. Program coordinator Kathy Quinn accompanied the kids as they arrived, dragging a large red wagon filled with 16 white plastic bag stuffed with everything from gloves to scarves, deodorant to soap and toques to gift cards. This is the third year in a row students from the program have supported the Courier’s drive, launched by office manager June Stafford nine years ago. Stafford began the project on behalf of Directions Youth Services, which assists homeless youth between the ages of 12 and 18 by helping them secure housing or a temporary job, improve their life skills and access medical services, such as addiction and mental health counselling. Directions also provides hot meals, laundry service and shower facilities 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and offers a safe haven for teens to get off the streets. A special thanks also goes out to the South Granville Seniors Centre for donating several bags of knitted and crocheted items, including blankets and toques. Items still desperately needed by Directions include gift cards for fast food restaurants and coffee shops, socks, underwear, toiletries and anything warm. For more information about Directions, visit fsgv.ca. Donations of new goods can be dropped off at the Courier office, 1574 West Sixth Ave., between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday before Dec. 18.

MOUNT PLEASANT Beats on Broadway is an acoustic open stage showcasing some of the city’s best musicians at Mount Pleasant Neighbour-

photo Dan Toulgoet

For the third year in a row, supportive pupils from Lord Tennyson elementary delivered bags of donated goods for the Courier’s annual Christmas Drive for Directions Youth Services. hood House, 800 East Broadway. The featured performance this month is by the duo Vazzy, who play numerous instruments specializing in French music and Metis fiddle and take to the stage at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 20. While you’re there, don’t miss the chance to try out the $2 bowls of Cambodian-style noodles cooked up by Muni in the kitchen. The event is by donations, which are shared between the performers and the neighbourhood house.

GRANDVIEW COLLINGWOOD A special solstice coffee house takes place Dec. 21 in the Al Mattison Lounge for seniors, 55 years and older, at the Britannia Community Centre. Musicians taking part include Backspin, Clara Shandler: Sidewalk

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The Vancouver Farmers Markets’ Holiday Market takes place this Saturday, Dec. 14 at the Croatian Cultural Centre, 3250 Commercial Dr. from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. More than 75 vendors will offer their finest selections of food, art, crafts and home accessories for your giftgiving pleasure. Shoppers can also support Vancouver Farmers Markets by purchasing a reusable shopping bag, water bottle or Tshirt. Check your coat for free and take part in the silent auction — not free. Also at the Croatian Cultural Centre is an event orga-

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nized to help the last minute shopper. Imagine it’s two days before Christmas and you haven’t finished shopping. Your choices are to hit the mall with thousands of other procrastinating shoppers to pick through the dregs of what’s left or drop by the Last Chance Craft Fair at the Croatian Cultural Centre, Sunday Dec. 23 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. The one-day craft extravaganza promises to be a win-win event by offering an opportunity for vendors to sell the last of the holiday items — and a chance to redeem your reputation with the family. Admission is $5 and children 12 and younger are free. Even better, the first 50 people through the door get a free swag bag. sthomas@vancourier.com twitter.com/sthomas10

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F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

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New Dentures

Granby claims clear Vision in leaving COPE SANDRA THOMAS Staff writer

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longtime community activist and former chair of the Coalition of Progressive Electors park board caucus has joined Vision Vancouver. But whether Brent Granby will seek a nomination with Vision for the November 2014 civic election is yet to be seen. Vision Vancouver dominates council, park board and the school board in the city. “At this point all I’ve decided is that my values and priorities align with the party,” said Granby, who added he believes it’s Vision Vancouver that’s most capable of creating positive change. “I’m going to ask around after the holidays to see what kind of support I have.” In a public statement released this week, Granby wrote in part, “The policy initiatives that Vision Vancouver has embarked upon have been ambitious… Affordability for young people and their families continues to remain a priority… I want to continue my work with community groups, activists, faith-based communities, academics, the business sector and decision makers to grow our city in a sustainable and responsible way.” The Courier reported in March 2012 that Granby had resigned as chair of the COPE park board caucus. At the time Granby said he was compelled to resign after “serious reflection” following the civic political party’s

annual general meeting in February. Granby left the party this past summer. “But it’s not so much that I left COPE, but that I’m joining Vision right now,” said Granby, who ran unsuccessfully for a seat on the park board as a member of COPE in 2011. “There’s an election coming up and it’s my own priorities that are important for me.” Those priorities include civic affairs, parks and recreation, community gardens, homelessness, affordable housing and the ability for his children to ride their bikes to school safely. “I don’t see that support coming from any other party than Vision,” said Granby. Granby describes recent protests regarding a proposed 12-foot-wide bike path through Kitsilano and Hadden parks as “political bluster.” “It’s a grave concern of mine that these groups have organized against safety,” said Granby. “For me that’s big. I want my kids to feel safe riding everywhere in the city.” COPE’s internal chairperson Tim Louis said Granby’s departure, along with the recent defection of other members, including veteran school board trustee Allan Wong, makes the party’s platform that much clearer. “They have to be on one side or the other and can no longer sit on the fence and make out as if they’re with one party when they’re really doing the bidding of the other,” said Louis. “Brent Granby has now made it very clear where his politics are at.” sthomas@vancourier.com twitter.com/sthomas10

DON’T FORGET: New Collection Days After Christmas This year, the City has added two garbage, recycling and Green Bin collection days between Christmas and New Year’s Day. Regular collection service will be provided on both Thursday, December 26 (Boxing Day) and Saturday, December 28. There will be no collection on Christmas Day or New Year’s Day.

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

feature story

Dreck the halls with

COURIER’S ANNUAL GIFT GUIDE OF THE WEIRD AND WRONG

MICHAEL KISSINGER

OBAMA BIRTH CERTIFICATE CERAMIC TRAY

his being the ninth annual Dreck the Halls, we stuck to the same winning formula of scouring the lonely recesses of the Internet and Vancouver’s retail landscape for unique, strange and just plain wrong Christmas gift ideas. Some involve bacon, cats, alcohol and making fun of the Vancouver Canucks, but all contribute to the resilient, gravy-stained fabric we call humanity. Happy holidays.

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$22 at Front & Company, 3772 Main St. Serve all those whack-jobs in the birther movement some humble pie with the Obama Birth Certificate Serving Tray. Dishwasher and microwave safe, this high-fired ceramic tray takes the much-scrutinized Hawaiian birth certificate of the 44th president of the United States and turns it into a household item for serving food, which sounds only slightly less racist than the people convinced Obama’s a Muslim and a communist born in Kenya.

BACON TUXEDO PUZZLE

SAMURAI UMBRELLA

Staff writer

$14.98 at Urban Empire, 1108 Commercial Dr. Bacon and irony continue their protracted dance under the kitschy moonlight. Not only is it a portrait of a man in a bacon tuxedo, it’s a 500-piece puzzle of a portrait of a man in a bacon tuxedo. Incidentally, in my hometown of Nanaimo, a bacon tuxedo means something completely different. And it usually doesn’t happen until at least the fourth or fifth date.

GRAVY, PICKLE AND BACON FLAVOURED CANDY CANES $9.98 at Urban Empire Bad taste isn’t the sole domain of ugly sweaters and Rob Ford jokes this holiday season. These savoury candy canes capture Christmas’s favourite flavours, including chubby resignation and regret.

TITANIC GRAVY BOAT

$55.98 at Urban Empire Some critics would argue that a gravy boat modelled after the Titanic is a tad on the tacky side and “too soon.” But as they say, when life gives you lemons, make a ceramic replica of that lemon and fill it with mouth-watering gravy. No word yet when the Exxon Valdez Salad Dressing Decanter hits the market, but let the oil spill where it may.

BEATLES YELLOW SUBMARINE LUNCH KIT

$21.98 at Urban Empire Pay tribute to one of the most important and critically acclaimed bands in history with all the majesty and gravitas associated with a child’s lunch kit. Granted, it’s no Bob Dylan toothbrush or Mozart toenail clipper, but think of all the catchphrases these babies evoke: “All you need is lunch,” “Lunchbox in the sky with doughnuts,” “Can’t buy me lunch” and “I wanna hold your ham.”

$36.95 at Urban Empire and Front Carrying an umbrella on your back that police could mistake for an actual samurai sword — what could go wrong? Test the boundaries of your personal safety while protecting yourself from assailants masking as precipitation with these weather weapons exquisitely crafted from ancient nylon and plastic.

SOLAR CORGI $17.98 at Urban Empire From the makers of Solar Queen Elizabeth comes this cute nod to the Queen’s canine companions. But Solar Corgi doesn’t just sound like the name of a Celtic funk band from 1991 — it’s environmentally friendly thanks to a solar panel that powers the movement of the dog’s head. Just like the ones at Buckingham Palace.

ATHEIST CHRISTMAS STOCKING

$14.98 at Urban Empire Just because you don’t believe in the existence of God doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate the birth of Baby Jesus and all the sacred gift giving that comes with it. Not only does this Richard Dawkinsfriendly mantle decoration proudly proclaim its owner’s allegiance to science, the Big Bang Theory and evolution — the colour scheme resembles that of an Old Style Pilsner can, which is a godless beer if there ever was one.

DARWIN CHRISTMAS ORNAMENT

$16.98 at Urban Empire Billed as “the most evolved Christmas ornament ever,” the Charles Darwin Christmas Ornament also bares more than a passing resemblance to another white bearded dude associated with the holidays — something you can tell your kids before you break it to them that they descended from primordial goo and heaven is just a concept to insulate us from the crippling fear of death.

GANDHI BALLPOINT PEN $11.98 at Urban Empire Kiss any good karma you’ve banked goodbye with this creepy, albeit stylish, retractable ballpoint pen. Whether you’re writing letters to political prisoners on behalf of Amnesty International or signing for your lunch bill at Hooter’s, this pen has you and your conscience covered.

PIMP CHEW TOY $13.95 at Urban Empire I’m pretty sure this is not the most politically correct gift you can give your pooch, but at least it’s not a dorky sweater or objectifying lingerie. These sweet looking grillz are not only made of durable rubber for chewing on, they’ll make your wimpy pug the most feared “dawg” on the block. I just wrote that.

LEDERHOSEN UNICORN CHRISTMAS ORNAMENT $16.98 at Urban Empire The good news is that you can now hang lederhosen and unicorns from your Christmas tree without shame, the way God intended. The bad news is that it comes in the form of an ornamental unicorn wearing lederhosen, which defies logic on too many levels. Although one could argue unicorns and lederhosen neutralize each other on the scale of absurdity, rendering both powerless and rather banal.

CHOCOLATE HANDCUFFS, GUN, BADGES

$1.50 to $8.99 at Vancouver Police Museum Gift Shop, 240 East Cordova St. Chocolate Handcuffs is another term that means something totally different in Nanaimo, but let’s focus on the Vancouver angle for now. These handcrafted replicas of the VPD’s crimesuppressing arsenal are not only a bargain, they also taste like justice. And what does justice taste like? Delicious milk chocolate.

VINTAGE VPD GLASSWARE $4.99 at Vancouver Police Museum Gift Shop We’re not sure how long these things have been hanging around for, or why the VPD had their own line of wine goblets, shot glasses and brandy snifters in the first place, but they look impressive in a “drunk uncle who likes to curl and follows the CFL” kind of way.

F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

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police poetry, beard hats DECORATED WITH WOOKIE FUR, GRAVY AND LEDERHOSEN

POETIC DIARY OF CONSTABLE #77 (RETIRED) $10.99 at Vancouver Police Museum Gift Shop 157 pages of self-published literary gold from former Vancouver Police officer George Burton, who retired in 1980 and died in 2012 at the age of 92. Burton wrote dozens of poems throughout his 30 years on the force, which are compiled in this trusty tome published in 1984. It includes such curious titles as “War Zone,” “The Prowler Call,” “Bribery?” and “Memo to Union Rep.” And not one wussy haiku or sonnet in the bunch.

the five-pound, 6,120- calorie gummy bear puts the “no” into novelty. As in, “No thank you. I think I’ll stay home tonight gnawing on this sugary monstrosity while watching Heartland reruns in my jogging pants.”

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$39.99 at beardowear.com Who of us living in Mount Pleasant hasn’t woken up from a night of givin ’er at the Biltmore or a fixie-bike-part instrument building party to discover someone has yarnbombed our face while we were passed out. Beardo’s Beard Hat cuts to the chase. It also keeps your head and face warm without the itch, ingrown hairs and goat-like smell of an actual beard. Sure it looks ridiculous, but so do half the guys attending an Iron and Wine concert. And for the romantics out there, there’s also a Crocheted Knight’s Helmet. Your PBR, m’lady.

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$18 at Front Be the darling of your local coffee shop whenever you peruse Stereogum or type “pixie dream girl” into your OK Cupid profile. This bike-inspired tablet stand features a suction cup that locks into place when the kickstand is swung down and says “I love you, Gregor” more than a typical box of fair-trade chocolates or hand-knitted alpaca scarf ever will.

CIGARETTE PILLOW $28 at Front Nestle up to this plush ode to nicotine, either as an unsatisfying substitute for the real thing or a cooler, more streetwise stand-in for your tattered Pound Puppy doll with the curious-smelling tail.

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thentic Game One ticket from the 2011 Stanley Cup Final between the Canucks and the Boston Bruins. Best of all, it doesn’t smell like gasoline, smoke or shame.

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$62 at helveticatheperfume.com Everyone’s favourite sansserif typeface finally gets its own scent. Just like the font Max Miedinger and Eduard Hoffmann created in 1957 for the Swiss design market, Helvetica Perfume is a neutral expression of Modernist design, has no intrinsic meaning and allows the content to convey the message. All of which is a pretentious way of saying you’re getting two ounces of distilled water in a limited edition bottle embossed with 24k gold print for your hard-earned money. But at least it’s not Comic Sans Font Perfume. That stuff smells like a clown’s undercarriage.

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CANUCKS FOREST FACE $19.95 at shop.nhl.com Arguably the most confusing and terrifying piece of Canucks memorabilia this side of Zack Kassian’s hairbrush, the Vancouver Canucks Resin Tree Face Ornament is a bizarre invention that allows users to decorate living tree trunks and transform their favourite birch, oak or maple into a slightly less annoying Canucks fan.

CANUCKS GIANT TICKET $99.95 at shop.nhl.com Slightly less expensive than an actual ticket to a Canucks game, this 14 x 33-inch “mega ticket” is a reproduction of an au-

$145 at uncommongoods.com Whether you’re mourning the loss of Mr. Pickles or celebrating the joy he brings you every day, the Custom Pet Pillow does a bang-up, if not slightly creepy, job. Just send in a colour photo of your pet looking straight at the camera with nothing obstructing him or her (the file must be a JPG or PNG and at least 2MB in size) and bring some much needed excitement to your ratty, hair-strewn, urine-scented arm chair, couch or bed.

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$16.95 at shop.nhl.com These 100 per cent cotton, ribbed dog T-shirts got me thinking: If I owned a dog that somehow played for the Canucks, what would his name be? After much soul searching, I say it would have to be Orland Kurtenbark. Sorry, Mutts Sundin.

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CAT TEEPEE $54 at cattipi.com These humble feline abodes won’t change any stereotypes about cats being spiritual nomads in touch with their aboriginal ancestors and the wanky poetic musings of Jim Morrison, but they do look pretty cool in your living room. Plus it gives litter boxes a sense of grace and nobility.

$38.75 at amazon.ca Considering the vast canyons of unnecessary crap out there, it’s quite the accomplishment to be awarded Worst Toy of 2013 by the killjoys over at the Campaign For A Commercial-Free Childhood. But CTA Digital’s mesmerizing iPotty fits the bill and then some. According to the product’s press bumph, the combination kid’s toilet and iPad holder “provides a fun and comfortable place to sit, while learning how to use the potty, playing apps, reading books or watching video clips.” And what apps would incontinent kids likely play while getting down to business? How about “Turds with Friends.” But seriously folks… I’ll be here all night. mkissinger@vancourier.com twitter.com/MidlifeMan1

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

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Stocking stuffers that won’t break the bank he halls are decked, the presents are wrapped, the cookies are baked, but you’ve still got those stockings to stuff. Don’t resort to lumps of coal just yet; here are five easy suggestions for affordable stocking stuffers: Take a coffee break: Gift cards to coffee shops or fast-food restaurants can come in small denominations of $5-$10 and will be appreciated in January when the leftovers run out. Fanc ds: Candy canes won’t cut it with the gourmand on your shopping list. How about some imported vanilla extract, killer hot sauce, high-end olive oil, or loose leaf tea? Hit the jackpot: At $1-$5 each, holiday lottery tickets already feature festive decorations and are easy to pick up at a convenience store/gas station to avoid yet another trip to the mall. Plus, if they hit the jackpot it’ll be a merry Christmas indeed. Great gadgets: For the techies and gamers, this is a good opportunity to load up on rechargeable batteries, USB flash drives, chargers, controllers, memory cards, and other accessories. Stick with the classics: From practical oldies-but-goodies like toothbrushes,

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

Help local families in need this holiday season hile in the midst of your giftbuying frenzy the next few weeks, take time to put a little bit aside for those in the Vancouver area who are less fortunate. The Vancouver YWCA has some worthy programs that could use your support this time of year: YWCA Crabtree Corner – A donation to Crabtree Corner helps women and children in the Downtown Eastside. Donations support Crabtree’s community kitchen, parenting groups, a fetal alcohol spectrum disorder prevention program, temporary housing and a child care centre. Emergency Food Vouchers – In BC, 59 per cent of the 108,000 families led by single mothers are living in poverty. It is often very difficult for them to afford even the most basic necessities. 100 per cent of the funds raised for this program are used to purchase food vouchers—at a discount so your financial support will stretch even further. YWCA Dress with Dignity – This provides $10 YWCA Thrift Store gift certificates for program participants who cannot afford basic necessities, such as clothing for themselves and their children. For more information, or to make a timely donation, go to ywcavan.org.

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news Wilmar heritage proposal fails

DEVELOPING STORY

with Naoibh O’Connor

A

proposal to rehabilitate the Wilmar mansion at 2050 Southwest Marine Dr. and add infill through a heritage revitalization agreement with the City of Vancouver has fallen through. “Wilmar” is the combined names of Willard and Mary Kitchen. The Kitchen family and descendents occupied the house until 2006 when Judith Jardine, the last living family member died. The estate was bequeathed to the Vancouver Foundation. The five-bedroom home, built in 1925, was on Heritage Vancouver’s 2012 endangered sites list. Developer Norm Porter of Beech Developments was behind the proposal to restore the property. He was working on the project with developer James Evans and architect Timothy Ankenman of Ankenman Marchand Architects. The deal to buy the property was contingent on an agreement with the city and

other matters, but Porter is going through with the purchase to try to recoup money that’s been spent on the proposal. The subjects have been cleared on the purchase and the closing date is early in the new year. Porter told the Courier he’s subdividing the property into two parcels. “We’re subdividing it into lots, one which will retain the house for now and one that we’re able to get a lot in that’s 102-feet wide — so an estate size lot that fits into the neighbourhood, the character of the neighbourhood as it exists today,” he said. “For now, the other home will remain. There are no guarantees because I will sell it and hopefully recover the money that I’ve spent so far. So there are no guarantees whether the buyer will restore it or choose to knock it down, but at least the opportunity will be there for someone to buy it and restore it. It’s a great house with really good bones. It’s a solid structure, but it would cost a lot of money to modernize. It hasn’t been maintained.” Porter praised the Vancouver Foundation for giving them the time to try to make the proposal work. He also said the city’s planning department did its best to lend support and expertise. “I don’t think there were unwilling partners. The fact is the City of Vancouver doesn’t have the policy tools

to make that happen in an economically viable way,” he said. Kent Munro, the City of Vancouver’s assistant director of planning, said through an HRA the city can offer additional density heritage revitalization agreement up to the point of the cost of preserving the heritage. “I guess from our point of view, we offered them as much density as we could and then it got to the point where they said ‘well in our view it’s not enough and we didn’t come to an agreement,’” Munro said. “They said that the property is big enough that it can be subdivided and they felt if it was subdivided and sold off to two different people it could generate more than this development idea that they had.” The fact the proposal hasn’t worked doesn’t mean the house is going to be demolished, Munro added, pointing out the city would be willing to work with a new owner on a proposal that would preserve the historic mansion. In any case, he said the city often deals with development ideas that for whatever reason fall through. “It’s a good illustration of how these issues are difficult. I think a lot of people don’t realize that it’s not easy to wave a magic wand and make these things happen. It really does have to be something that works for the city, something that

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works for the property owner, and something that works for the community. If any of these things aren’t there, then an idea isn’t going to work,” he said. noconnor@vancourier.com twitter.com/naoibh

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

news Neighbours rage at Ramada open house CITY FAILED TO NOTIFY RESIDENTS ABOUT TEMPORARY SOCIAL HOUSING AT FORMER HOTEL, SAY RESIDENTS WHO ATTENDED MEETING CHERYL ROSSI Staff writer

S

ecurity was called at a jammed open house Wednesday night on temporary supported housing at the former Ramada on East Hastings after it turned ugly. More than 200 area residents attended the open house at the hotel to hear from the city and housing organizers about the proposal. But with so many people squeezed into a tight space, answers were difficult to find. The information boards the city set up were tough to see amid the throngs. Within an hour, Mandarin-speaking visitors were using the back of a board as a solid base for a piece of paper where they listed their email addresses for one another. A security guard was called into the fray when a group started yelling in Mandarin, as translated for the Courier by onlooker Fanny Wong. “There’s no consulting with us and we don’t want this shelter,” one woman bellowed repeatedly, according to Wong. She said the woman was particularly perturbed because she had been told to shut up. Residents learned at the open house that

Because the city “ tried to bypass any

community input, [the operator] might not be able to do his job and he might not be able to help those people.

— Lara Davis Community Builders Foundation, a network of humanitarian organizations in different countries, will operate the building and the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Society will select the bulk of the residents from the 201 Central St. shelter it runs. Wong and other residents at the open house say the city should organize a presentation and question and answer session at the nearby community centre. It was difficult for more than one person to hear the answers a representative provided amid the din.

Lara Davis, chairperson for the parent advisory council at the neighbouring Franklin elementary, said no one south of Hastings Street received a letter from the city about the project. Franklin’s principal learned plans for the building from a parent within the last two weeks. “I feel bad for the operator,” Davis said. “Because the city tried to bypass any community input, he might not be able to do his job and he might not be able to help those people.” Sheldon North feared the Ramada, like the Bosman hotel that he works across from on Howe Street, would accommodate hard-tohouse people with mental illness and bring more drug dealers and violence to the area where he lives with three infant children. He was relieved to hear the Aboriginal Friendship Centre Society will select seniors and the working poor from its shelter near Main and Terminal to live at the Ramada. Susan Tatoosh, executive director of the society, said Central has 32 guests ready to rent in a supported setting. Residents will probably be moved in 10 at a time starting this month. Seniors with health problems including arthritis, which is exacerbated in inclement weather, will move in first. The city wants approximately 40 people housed in the building at Hastings

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and Skeena. Tatoosh said a couple of spots would be left open for homeless people from the area near the Ramada. Residents will have a tenancy agreement and pay rent. Area resident Michael O’Brien asked Gordon Wiebe, chair of Community Builders Foundation, if his organization would find out whether potential residents have a criminal history. Wiebe said Community Builders would be transparent if anything goes wrong. “My concern is really related to the safety and welfare of the kids, full stop,” said O’Brien, whose daughter attends Franklin. Neighbours wanted to know whether residents of the Ramada would be permitted to use drugs and alcohol at the hotel. Wiebe said they could as long as they function as quiet and respectful neighbours. Overnight guests won’t be permitted. “We have a zero tolerance for criminal activity,” he said. Debra Nothstein, principal of Franklin, said she’s heard good things about Community Builders, which operates supportive housing at the Jubilee, Dodson, Powell and Vogue rooms. crossi@vancourier.com twitter.com/Cheryl_Rossi

F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

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Gemini’s year ahead: The first half, lasting to late July, continues the rain of good fortune in earnings, possessions and “surface” interactions with others. (Surface can include casual, sensual links without love’s deeper profundities.) Your memory (which has surprised you mildly these last few months as you remembered things you’d forgotten you even knew) remains strong. Your luck in money surges March through early July, so chase clients, ask for a permanent pay raise, sell items, etc. You could climb to an earnings plateau that can last many years! This first half of 2014 is also marked by a stunning run of romance. It’s especially powerful in February — old flame? — and June, although one affair/attraction is likely to fill every month to July. You’ll be amorous, courageous and unlikely to take “no” for a final answer. Be gentle — with children, too — as you could be a little too aggressive, harsh. Hope fills love, even though the one you chase might have many problems. All year, work and health continue to be slow, burdensome — but you quietly march through these, and quiet successes and cures will be yours.

It’s your last week of far travel, international contacts, law, education, and cultural pursuits — and it’s an easy, smooth week. An important trend has begun: Now to July, relationships flare into heat and intensity. This can cause an argument at the gas station or store, an elbow in the ribs, a powerful urge to relocate, impetuous bids for partnership or public approval and a sudden, intense attraction or love affair.

The accent remains on friends, communications, errands and other short trips, paperwork and details. Sunday/Monday bring wisdom, understanding of how/why society works, far travel and/or international contacts, intellectual and cultural pursuits, and gentle love. Someone who displays an attraction toward you these two days could become a major suitor/lover.

The accent remains on life’s mysteries and depths during this pleasant week. Few problems appear. Chase money, buy/sell Sunday/Monday. Errands, communications, short trips, paperwork and casual acquaintances fill midweek. Head home Friday/Saturday — hug kids, garden, study security, retirement plans. Contacts with government agencies, head office or institutions yield great results Friday.

The general emphasis lies on money and possessions – and a sensual attraction. This is your last chance until mid-2014 to ask for a pay raise, or to collect a handful of new clients. Shop any time this week — sell unwanted items, too. Finances of another sort arise Sunday/Monday — two averagely good days to invest or seek debt counselling. Your sexual urges rise to the surface.

If you’ve been hungering for romance, I can promise you’ll at least meet it sometime during the next seven months. Your hopes will be high, same period. One major wish will come true (could be about friends, popularity, politics, “undeveloped territory” — or romance with a friend). Sexual, financial zones remain buoyant to March, but your income might be a bit slow. Your energy and effectiveness surge Sunday/Monday.

Your energy, charisma and clout remain at a yearly high for one more week. It starts with relationships, then relations are tested, then understanding and love come. Now to July, a romantic dream can come true. The same seven months promote pleasure, creativity, beauty, sports, speculation and risk-taking — but all in a group, not alone. Group creativity, for example, could be working on a film or playing with a band.

The general accent lies on work, health and dependents during this easy, smooth week. Be selfaware — now to next July, don’t become a dictator on the home front. You can be unintentionally heavyhanded or critical, or expect too much of others. This is balanced, through March, by a sweet partner, or love in general. Love itself, if you’re wooing somebody, turns in circles next week through January.

This easy, pleasant week is your last period of solitude and lower energy. Tackle chores and obligations Sunday/Monday – you’ll get things done. Midweek brings crucial and casual relationships, with much good luck, especially Tuesday afternoon and Wednesday. But be cautious Tuesday night to Wednesday.

Love and romance, creativity, self-expression, adventure, sports/games, a speculative, risk-taking approach; these continue and you win. (Next week, a work phase starts, so enjoy pleasures while you can.) Social delights, popularity, optimism, wish fulfillment, light romance and entertainment fill Sunday/Monday. A relationship might reach a climax but if it does, it hints that this is about a 7 on the scale of “love of my life.”

The general emphasis remains on popularity, group affairs, light romance, entertainment and wish fulfilment — but this is the last week of these for awhile. Take advantage. Sunday/Monday bring romance, creative urges, pleasure and beauty. Take a risk, you’ll likely win! A Gemini might be involved. Tackle chores mid-week, but be careful Tuesday night to Wednesday dawn. Follow safety procedures.

The general accent remains on your domestic situation, real estate, security, Mother Nature, diet and nutrition, soul and rest. Yield to those urges to take a nap. Sunday/Monday emphasize ambition and worldly status — which might cause a tug-or-war with the urge to rest, to be home. Still, these are two favorable, productive days. Midweek brings a ray of relief, as friends, light romance, optimism and love of life flow in.

Ambition, prestige relations, your community status — these fill this week. (The weeks following will be much more enjoyable, social.) Sunday/Monday add a competing note: these days nudge you to sit down, relax, be secure and home-loving. Whether you charge out the front door, or stay in your warm confines, is your choice — not much rides on it. Midweek brings pleasure, beauty, a creative surge and winning hunches.

Monday: Benjamin Bratt (50). Tuesday: Milla Jovovich (38). Wednesday: Brad Pitt (50). Thursday: Jake Gyllenhaal (33). Friday: Jonah Hill (30). Saturday: Samuel L. Jackson (65). Sunday: Diane Sawyer (68).

MORE AT ASTRALREFLECTIONS.COM

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FRED

EMAIL: yvrflee@hotmail.com TWITTER: @FredAboutTown

UNLEESHED

GROWING HUNGER: The Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society provides assistance to more than 28‚000 people every week, with children representing 26 per cent of the population in need. CBC hosted its annual food drive and open house in support of the non-profit agency. Personalities, including Tony Parsons, George Stroumboulopoulos and The Wealthy Barber’s David Chilton, were on hand for the daylong telethon.

POWER LUNCH: Nearly two decades ago, YWCA Crabtree Corner provided Diane Forsythe-Abbott with a telephone and a warm place to sit on a stormy night when she locked herself out of her car. That chance encounter was the beginning of a lasting friendship, marked by this year’s annual fundraising luncheon for the family resource centre in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. Yours truly played auctioneer at the power lunch fronted by Cynnie Woodward and Ingrid Abbott at Hy’s Encore. Business and community leaders gathered to raise more than $50,000 for the halfway house for young moms and their children. COOLEST FESTIVAL: The Whistler Film Festival wrapped up last week. Gracing the white carpet at the five-day celebration were Hollywood notables Richard Dreyfuss, Melissa Leo and Jason Priestley. The 13th running served up 84 films from 14 countries. Continuing to support cinematic excellence and more than $31,500 in prize monies, the festival awarded The Husband, by Bruce McDonald, the coveted $15,000 Borsos prize.

Body-painted Andrea Nelson played naughty at a Fairmont Waterfront Xmas reception. VP Phil Barnes (l) played nice donating nearly $10,000 to Alan Sack’s BC Hospitality Foundation.

From left, CBC’s Margaret Gallagher, George Stroumboulopoulos and Shiral Tobin helped raise upwards of $614,000 for the Greater Vancouver Food Bank.

Diane Forsythe-Abbott’s (right) Hy’s luncheon raises more than $50,000 annually for Janet Austin’s YWCA Crabtree Corner for single mothers and their children.

David Wilson’s newest works of local landmarks on canvas and cardboard are on display at The Winsor Gallery until Jan. 11.

Variety’s Steven Gaydos moderated a conversation with Academy award-winning actress Melissa Leo (The Fighter) at the Whistler Film Festival.

Michelle Osry, centre, welcomed Roxana Colquhoun, Fiona Famulak and 200 leading women in business to a holiday Holt’s mixer.

Actor James Franco made eyes at a gaggle of fans lucky enough to attend the Indigo book signing of his debut novel Actors Anonymous.

Hollywood actor and Oscar winner Richard Dreyfuss headlined Shauna Hardy Mishaw’s 13th Whistler Film Festival, which she co-founded.

F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

A25

GOT ARTS? 604-738-1411 | events@vancourier.com

2

1

3

OUR

PICKS DEC. 13 - 17, 2013

For video and web content, scan page using the Layar app.

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1 2 3 4

One of our favourite events of the year returns to the upstairs of the ANZA Club, Dec. 14. GUIDED BY ROBOTS features vocalist Kevin Perley and members of the band SK ROBOT belting out songs by everyone’s favourite beer-swilling band from Ohio, GUIDED BY VOICES, followed by a soggy set of live karaoke by increasingly drunk audience members singing such tunes as “Teenage FBI,” “Game of Pricks” and “Motor Away” into the wee hours. Admission is by donation with all proceeds going to Autism Speaks Canada. Come on, come on, come on, the club is open. It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. GOH BALLET’S THE NUTCRACKER returns to the Centre in Vancouver for Performing Arts Dec. 14 to 22. Tickets at ticketmaster.ca. Details at gohnutcracker.com.

Accompanied by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and conducted by music director Leslie Dala, the VANCOUVER BACH CHOIR presents HANDEL’S MESSIAH Dec. 14, 8 p.m at The Orpheum after a two-year absence. For tickets and info, call 604-696-4290 or go to vancouverbachchoir.com.

You have two chances to see the seasonally appropriate documentary JINGLE BELL ROCKS! this week. Equal parts social history, pop culture pilgrimage and revealing character study, Vancouver filmmaker Mitchell Kezin takes viewers on his obsessive and trippy “cinematic sleighride to unearth 12 of the most amazing Christmas songs ever recorded.” It screens Dec. 16, 8:45 p.m. at Vancity and Dec. 17, 9:30 p.m. at the Rio. Go to viff.org and riotheatre.ca for details.

A26

THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

Get your FREE daily dose of beauty, fashion, culture and dining:

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3 Charity-Minded Secret Santa gifts The only thing that feels better than giving a great gift is knowing that proceeds from the purchase are helping others, too. Herewith a selection of gifts (all under $40) that will make you the hero of the gift exchange. Almost everyone has a need for a reusable water bottle – but not many help to build wells. This 500ml glass water bottle ($29) from Obakki features a silicone sleeve and 100 per cent of proceeds go to drill water wells in South Sudan. Drink up! At Obakki.com You’ve been wearing your heart on your sleeve with Cause We Care bracelets. Now the Vancouver charity has teamed up with La Notte to cre;CI CDBE <B(BCI" I"BCB#& =,EDBGC 7*824 9I&I6CB&F local families in need. Now you can wear your heart on your… heart. At Aritzia.com

Tradeworks employs women at risk in their Vancouver Downtown Eastside Women’s Workshop and trains them in life, employ(I&C- ;&" $;G!I&CG' E>B<<E+ =DIEI GI6<<;9<I maple wood pens ($40) are made from reclaimed Canadian hardwoods and include engraving at no extra cost. At Tradeworks.com

Maria Tallarico

We like our holiday ornaments and party dresses sparkly. Our face? Not so much.

You knew the inevitable was coming: an invite to an ugly sweater party.

Aversion to shimmer is what makes us skeptical about products deemed “illuminating” or “luminizing.” Call us crazy but a face full of glitter is a far cry from a J.Lo glow.

But with the plethora of options, it seems that 6&"B&F E#(ICDB&F CD;C BE C;$>' I&#AFD C# EC;&" #AC D;E 9I$#(I B&$GI;EB&F<' "BH6$A<C+ =DBE year, you can DIY the fug with with the Ugly Christmas Sweater Kit. ($20), which provides a GI" E)I;CIG- HI<C ;$$IEE#GBIE 7CDB&> E&#)3;>IE and reindeer), glitter glue, jingle bells, pom poms and a sewing kit. Remember, when going for ugly, more is more.

Finally, we’ve found a keeper for the lit-fromwithin look: Josie Maran’s Argan Illuminizer (included in the Escape to Morocco Holiday Lights & Brights Set. We love it mixed into our foundation but it’s also gorgeous as a highlighter. Another beautiful thing about this formula? It’s rich in moisturizing, vitamin E-rich argan oil. $35 at www.sephora.com

We’re Up All Night to Get Lucky’s

Because if Bridget Jones taught us anything, it’s that true love can be found wearing a reindeer jumper. $20 online at www.spencersonline.com

We’re in Hot Water

Maria Tallarico

Sara Samson

:A(! DI;" 6GEC B&C# D#<B";' "I$;"I&$I )BCD 3AHH'- ;GCBE;&;< "#&ACE HG#( 5A$>'/E+ 1& I<H "G#!!I" ; EDB!(I&C #HH ;C #AG #H6$I , ?B&FIGbread (topped with white chocolate ganache, candied orange peel, ginger and cranberries), Red Velvet (topped with peppermint cream cheese glaze and crushed candy canes) and the showstopper - an Eggnog Snowball 0B%(;G> 6<<I" )BCD IFF&#F !;ECG' $GI;( ;&" topped with soft meringue and coconut.

It’s the most widely consumed beverage in the world after water - whether you like classic cup of Earl Grey or a partake in some of the CGI&"BIG 3;@#AGE <B>I 0BGCD";' .;>I- ; &B$I cup of tea feels oh-so-grownup.

Considering leaving a few out for Santa this year (or risk a coal full of stocking in 2014). At Lucky’s Dougnuts, 2902 Main St., VAncouver and 2198 W. 4th Avenue, Vancouver, www.luckysdoughnuts.com

KUDOS& KVETCHES HARDSHIP POST

So Bad It’s Good

Glow Getter

Christine Laroche

arts&entertainment

Just in time for the holidays, our favourite cookware line, Le Creuset , has expanded their Café Collection to include ceramic teapots and presses. The Large Teapot comes with a stainless steel infuser ($60) for loose leaf teas, it’s great for entertaining and looks pretty sitting on a stack of coffee table books. The Tea for One set ($40, pictured) includes a teapot that sits atop of a teacup, perfect for those cozy afternoons alone. At www.lecreuset.ca

subscribe for free to WIN Email info@vitamindaily.com to subscribe to VitaminDaily.com’s free Vancouver edition and you will be automatically entered to win 1 of 5 blo Blow Dry Bar gift cards (valued at $35/each). Terms and conditions apply. Contest closes Nov 30, 2013.

News earlier this week that Canada Post plans to phase out door-to-door delivery of regular mail to urban residents hit K&K pretty hard, right in our mail satchel, you could say. And not just because we’ve long harboured fantasies of donning a pair of Canada Post-issued shorts and getting super fit and tan delivering mail. Peering into our mailbox and seeing a letter with our name on it, even if it’s a credit card statement, subscription notice or Reitmans’ catalogue, makes our cold dark heart twinkle for a few seconds. We’re sure generations from now people will look back at the practice of door-todoor delivery, or mail for that matter, as quaint and impractical, much like the Pony Express or condoms. But we’ll be sad to see our home mailbox go empty, even if it does save some much-needed money for the cash-strapped Canada Post, which also announced it would be raising the cost of postage significantly. Some are saying that a standard letter, which currently costs 63 cents to send anywhere in the country, could cost as much as $1, and we’ve read plenty of complaints on Facebook and Twitter from people who never pass up the opportunity to express their indignation towards petty

K&K’s dreams of delivering mail and getting super fit and tan has gone down the drain after news that Canada Post will phase out door-to-door delivery. things. Seriously, a loonie to send an actual physical object thousands of miles to a specific destination in just few days is still a bargain, if you ask us. And we’re the cheapest people we know. So until that sad, fateful day when we have to walk down the block to a big impersonal, multi-resident mail dispenser, serviced by anonymous mail drones who’ll never know the bite of an angry dog or be invited in for “tea” from a lonely housewife or househusband, we’re going to savour every last letter from our grandmother, postcard from gloating friends and piece of junk mail addressed to us. twitter.com/KudosKvetches

arts&entertainment

F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

A27

Makes the Perfect Christmas Gift! 3 NIGHTS + 2 MATINEES! BALLET BC

PRESENTS

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SUGAR-PLUM PERFECT!”

–The Ottawa Citizen

Get your fill of clothing, jewelry, ceramics and more at the Shiny Fuzzy Muddy show Dec. 14 and 15 at Main Street’s Heritage Hall.

Shiny Fuzzy Muddy people CHERYL ROSSI Staff writer

J

anna Hurtzig’s Astrosatchel bags were already selling well in Vancouver stores when founders of Shiny Fuzzy Muddy invited her to display her bright vinyl creations at their second show. “I liked the fact that it was all women artists putting together a show,” said Hurtzig, who now helps organize the event. “I liked that the Shiny Fuzzy Muddy show was based around Main Street… We all lived in and around Main Street so it was just kind of cool to be involved with something that was so local, it wasn’t just Vancouver, it was doing something right in the ’hood.” Hurtzig never expected the small,non-profit,curatedshow to be running 10 years on. This year’s event takes place Dec. 14 and 15 at Heritage Hall. “We’re not event planners. We really do it for the love and I think that’s why everybody loves the show because we’re not about taking for ourselves as the organizers,” she said. “I feel like the customers sense it. I lovethatwedon’tchargepeople to get into the show. I just think that’s the best possible thing.” Mixed-media artist Arleigh Wood started Shiny Fuzzy Muddy with jewelry designer Kari Woo (shiny), textile artist FrancesDickinson,whowasjust starting Frances Felt (fuzzy), and ceramics artist Laura McKibbon (muddy) in 2003. “We were all a group of artists starting out, just starting our businesses, and we had a common goal of thinking we could put together a show and

pool our mailing lists and just put something together that was independent,” Wood said. The first Shiny Fuzzy Muddy show happened at the Artech artist live/work building just off Main Street, where Dickinson lived. “It was just a way to have a venue that was artist-run with mixed media, mixing arts, design and craft together,” Wood said. The four founders have since popped out five children and two have left Vancouver. But the show carries on, partly because planning it has become easier with practice and particularly since they secured a spot at the prominent Heritage Hall at Main and East 15th. The 2003 Shiny Fuzzy Muddy featured six artists. This weekend’s show features 27. New vendors include Sabrina Butterfly Designs’ women’s clothing from Edmonton, A Trace of Grey Designs’ leather handbags and accessories and Dear Pony handmade eco design clothing from Nelson. Hurtzig looks forward to checking out zed handmade’s chunky knit wool accessories and ceramics by MIKIND. “I love their aesthetic. It has a very Wes Anderson feel to me,” she said. “I bought one of their plates last year

and I look at it every day.” She and Wood are also fans of Cathy Terepocki ceramics. “She does layering of different images,” Wood said. “They’re contemporary and kind of folky at the same time.” Wood has been focusing on layering photos of Westcoast landscapes with beeswax and “painterly” graphics. Hurtzig will sell her Astrosatchel bags and her newer Winterluxe 100-per cent recycled cashmere accessories. “The Astrosatchel bags just don’t wear out fast enough and so people need to support me again with stuff that they lose, like mittens that tend to go astray,” she said. Hurtzig has shown her work off at numerous craft shows this season but Shiny Fuzzy Muddy is her favourite. “Customers I’ve known for years come to the show,” she said. “You don’t feel like you’re working, you feel like you’re hanging out with friends who give you money and take away the things that you’ve worked really hard to make.” Shiny Fuzzy Muddy runs 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Dec. 14 and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Dec. 15 at 3102 MainSt.Formoreinformation, see ShinyFuzzyMuddy.com. crossi@vancourier.com twitter.com/Cheryl_Rossi

FROM

$29! “This energetic romp with its underlying messages is suitably seasonal entertainment”

Back by Popular Demand! Alberta Ballet’s The Nutcracker

Featuring Live Music from The Vancouver Symphony Orchestra

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By Nicola Cavendish A HOMEGROWN CHRISTMAS TALE

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

arts&entertainment

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ancouverites are a caffeine-crazed breed. But we’re also choosy about which beanery we frequent and what we elect to sip there. That thought occurred to me the other day as I looked around Main Street’s 49th Parallel, which was comfortably busy in the rainy, late winter afternoon. Part of the appeal lies in the laid-back, lounge-like surroundings — and that Lucky’s Doughnuts is here. But there’s also good taste at play, matched with a sense of purpose that goes far beyond getting the roast and the grind right. Driving a part of the coffee program is a unique Direct Trade initiative that’s helping transform the lives of a collective of Honduran farmers. The company’s green coffee buyer, Laura Perry, says that by working closely with the Santa Barbara region farmers, they’ve been able to make a huge difference.

Park Theatre

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photo Tim Pawsey

Left: Laura Perry buys Direct Trade coffee for 49th Parallel. Right: Some stocking stuffer suggestions for the marmite lovers in your life. “We focus on high end specialty coffee, rather than commodity coffee,” Perry explains. That means they pay a lot more for their beans — $4.17 — almost four times as much as the current commodity price of around $1.05 a pound. That isn’t even close to what the farmer needs to survive, she says. Perry travels extensively to work closely with producers around the coffee world and has in-depth knowledge of the challenges they face during the growing season and harvest. The resulting quality allows the company to pay a premium price that’s above more well known enhanced programs, such as Fair Trade, which, while laudable, doesn’t address quality. Not only has the Direct Trade project helped the farmers to significantly upgrade their equipment, it’s also enabling them to pay their pickers ahead of the harvest, which is helping to transform their standard of living. “It’s really exciting to be able

to work with people through their first steps of becoming premium producers,” Perry says. “You can sense the pride and see a marked difference in culture compared to other areas.” You can taste the Santa Barbara farmers’ beans in 49th Parallel’s Holiday Celebration Blend, a smooth, wellrounded, slightly nutty blend currently featured in the store’s cupping and roasting demonstrations.

STOCK IT TO ME In the quest for some bookish stocking stuffers, I found myself at Books to Cooks (1470 West Second Ave.), where a couple of small tomes grabbed my attention, including The MacSween Haggis Bible ($11), which you could give just in time for Burns Night. While The Marvellous Miniature Marmite Cookbook ($13.95) may not be for everyone (Marmite scrambled eggs?), there may be some takers. On the other hand, I can think of more than a few ham-fisted teens (and even the occa-

sional adult) who’d be well served by a copy of Tiffany’s Table Manners for Teenagers ($19.95). This clever little guide to good manners was written by Walter Hoving, the former chairman of Tiffany’s 50 years ago.

CRAB-TASTIC We’ve long been fans of Maenam (1938 West Fourth Ave.), but chef Angus An’s new seafood offerings take things to the next level. You’ll have to order a day ahead for the likes of eight-spice crispy sea bream or black pepper whole Dungeness crab.

BELLY’S BEST • Red Racer ESB Assertive but not overly hopped Extra Special Bitter from Surrey’s Central City is the perfect winter mouthful, richly textured, malty and respectably bitter. Try it with tourtière. And if you’re between the Port Mann and Patullo bridges, be sure to check out their impressive new brewery and distillery.

F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

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the

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2013

holiday edition

SPECIAL ADVERTISING FEATURE

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ith the holidays around the corner, entertaining season is in full swing with soirées to host, roast dinners to serve and plenty of get-togethers that scale from small and casual to large and formal. Here are some simple tips to make all your celebrations easy entertaining: Choose one date that accommodates your schedule and stick with it! From five guests to 50, there will always be a scheduling conflict for someone, so don’t let that complicate your party. There are plenty of other holiday parties, send them a holiday card and let them know you’ll see them soon. Whether it’s a few canapés and a signature cocktail or a seven course meal with wine pairings, plan out the meal everyone well in advance of the big date. This will help accommodate all dietary concerns such as allergies and intolerances of your guests, and helps build out your grocery list. Not everyone’s a social butterfly, so enlist your chatty party guests or use conversation cards to get others mingling. Another bonus tip is to put out less seating – people are more likely to chat while standing than sitting down. (continued next page)

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

festive homes December 11, 2013 – January 4, 2014

4:30 to 9:00 p.m. (closed Christmas Day)

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ers and vintage holiday ornaments. Place a few ornaments in a glass vase, or atop a cake stand with greenery, for a stunning centerpiece. Ensure lighting in the room is warm and subdued to make your guests feel at home. A#'8;$"(* 7,7@$;#>–Avoid being the bartender all night and create a fun, festive signature cocktail. Create an area where guests can serve themselves from a decorative punch bowl with holiday-themed glassware, allowing you to enjoy the party and mingle with your guests. Keep wine and beer on hand for easy self-serve refreshments.

Oak St. at West 37th Ave. vandusengarden.org

0<2 7,))** 9;(–As the celebration winds down, it’s time to bring out the coffee, tea and hot chocolate. Instead of slaving away in the kitchen making multiple drinks, opt for a single-serve home brewer, like which easily allows guests to brew their own customized hot beverages with the touch of a button. For a festive touch, serve with candy cane pieces, chocolate shavings and cinnamon to garnish.

W

ith all the hustle and bustle of the festive season, it’s not uncommon to feel overwhelmed at the idea of planning a party or family gathering. Hosts are always looking for easy entertaining ideas that will save time and make their guests merry. Follow these tips for easy party planning:

!*>;= ;85 %;C* )"8–The most important tip for any good party host is to relax and enjoy themselves. Focus on what really matters – celebrating the spirit of the season and enjoying the company of friends and family. Ideas courtesy newscanada.com.

4&&#'8 $;&@&–Embrace pot-luck style and ask guests to bring a dish in lieu of a gift. Assign someone to make a holiday playlist or pick up extra ice. Most guests are happy to contribute and help make the party a success. 0*7,(;$* &#:+>-–Instead of investing in costly decorations, simply spruce up your al fresh flowspace with scented candles, seasonal

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F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

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festive homes ;='< F* .,F' B!-")' B!"# = $)**)'<!-" 7,:#= 4,(())

6,7;> %;85:;5* ',"(:*$ '#)$ 9;&@*$& Looking for a fabulous hostess gift to present when visiting people, or a thoughtful gift for a friend or colleague? Set a new standard for gift giving by supporting your local producers and farmers, and ensuring B.C.’s culinary scene is kept vibrant and growing.

A

s temperatures have dropped and winter weather has arrived, there is nothing cozier than enjoying a hot beverage in the comfort of your own home. Instead of trekking to the nearest coffee shop, treat yourself to this irresistible peppermint mocha coffee. It can be made in under a minute, using a single-serve home brewer as described below. /*++*(:#8$ 3,7%; 1,))** Prep Time: 5 min. | Makes: 1 serving, 1 cup (250 mL) • 1 each Chocolate Syrup T Disc and Espresso T Disc from 1 pkg. (407 g) TassimoGevalia • 1 tbsp. whipped cream • 1 tbsp. finely crushed candy canes Prepare Chocolate SyrupT Disc in mug or heatproof glass. Use same mug to prepare EspressoT Disc.Top with remaining ingredients. How to Make Peppermint-Coated Mug Rims: Moisten rim of mug with wet paper towel, then dip rim in finely crushed candy canes on a sheet of waxed paper. Let stand inverted

on waxed paper until ready to fill with beverage and serve. Special Extra: For a festive twist, add a candy cane to filled mug; use as a stir stick.

Baskets can includee personalized messages and same day delivery. Have something special in mind? Custom baskets are available too – choose your products and create a basket that is uniquely yours! Order online at ediblecanada.com, or call 604-682-6675.

New Development

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Your donation of only $2 supports the growth of healthy communities. Now in its 12th year, Choices’ Star of the Season Program enriches the lives of families all across Metro Vancouver and the Okanagan. Kindly donated by Calabar Printers, Choices’ Holiday Stars may be purchased between November 1st and December 24th for a donation of $2.00.

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

festive homes C"='1%"F++)+ 2):,' 1 8?B=.% !- C",')

Season’s Greetings! T

transitional or urban rooms, “Bring us your room measurements and any important colours or fabrics and we will help you co-ordinate your rooms,” she adds Check out the showroom for a great fabric selection, plus the rug gallery, lamps, mirrors, tables, throws, and accessories. Sofasogood.ca.

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While Harvey’s Furniture & Appliances impressed readers in the Courier’s 2013 Stars of Vancouver survey on the East Side, Kerrisdale Lumber at 6191 West Boulevard has branched out in recent years to have the best selection of barbecues in town, and home décor that is eye-popping and original.The revered business cleaned up in the hardware, home décor and appliance categories this year on theWest Side.

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At Sofa So Good at 2331 Alberta St. (nearWest 7th), you’ll find a vast selection of coverings and seating options for every room in your home. As a top winner in the Stars’ furniture category, their stock is truly up to par. “Your sofa should be your haven within your sanctuary. Live everyday like it’s the weekend,” says co-owner, Barbara Rasmussen. “Your well dressed home reflects who you are and what you love.”

President Mark Perry is a third generation “family guy” – his father,Tremayne, and grandfather, Bert, preceded him, going back to 1921! Perry joined the Kerrisdale Lumber team in 1974, and is presently involved with day-to-day operations. Along with store manager Reza Mofakham, they keep things humming along. (And do check out sister business Perry & Co. for beautiful paints and wall-coverings – 6131W. Blvd.) Kerrisdalelumber.com.

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F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

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F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

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GOT SPORTS? 604-738-1411 | mstewart@vancourier.com

Top 10 gifts to buy an athlete RACER’S EDGE

with Kristina Bangma

W

ith only 11 days before Christmas, the countdown is on. Shopping for the perfect gift can be difficult and timeconsuming, cutting into your own exercise and training routine. As holiday parties, travel, guests or advanced deadlines take up your time, I’ll share with you 10 of my favorite gifts to buy the athlete in your life — and that includes you. You can find all these items in Vancouver for less than $30. Tis the season. 1. Socks Socks are an underrated gift item. I love socks. Depending on the sport, socks are even more important. For winter sports such as skiing, snowshoe running or snowboarding, it is extremely important that you are well equipped with at least one pair of Smart Wool Socks. These comfy socks come in several different levels of warmth and are excellent for frosty outdoor conditions. The cost might just squeak you past $30 once tax is added, but they are worth every penny and will last for years. You can try MEC or any outdoor store, but these socks do sell quickly. 2. Tea Studies have found some teas may help reduce the risk of cancer, heart disease and diabetes, and also encourage weight loss, lower cholesterol and bring about mental alertness. Instead of wine this Christmas, indulge in some specialty teas. My two favorite vendors are Angela’s Tea, which you can only find at

photo Dan Toulgoet

High-quality winter socks are important for skiing, snowshoe running or snowboarding. Christmas markets and David’s Tea. 3. Sport-specific specialty items Every sport has specialty items that constantly wear out and need to be replaced. A cyclist, for example, can never have too many water bottles or too much shammy butter, which is the greasy stuff that goes between the bum and cycling shorts to prevent saddle sores. Runners can always use tank tops and socks — yes, I’m back to socks again. And I’m sure any hockey player would love some new hockey tape to help renew an old stick. Every sport has its thing.

photo Dan Toulgoet

David’s Tea in Oakridge Centre sells a convenient taster pack of eight different samples.

4. Restaurant gift certificates Athletes love to eat and need to eat often. Although $30 won’t buy more than one meal, it’s an incentive to try a new restaurant. If you want your gift certificate to stretch a bit farther, Whole Foods or Capers are always favorites for healthy fare. 5. Gloves Gloves get wet, worn out, smelly and are easily lost. When it comes to winter sports, the only thing you can never have too many of — besides socks, of course — are gloves. Even during the course of a single day, the temperatures can vary drastically in Vancouver so it doesn’t matter what type of glove you buy, they will be well used. 6. Magazine subscription If you have a passion for something, there is a magazine about that thing. Magazine subscriptions are actually very cheap and can be the gift that keeps on giving through the whole year. 7. Introductory class Sometimes the only thing stopping someone from getting active or trying something new is taking that first step through the door. If you can remove the barrier of simply showing up, you might be able to help your friends start 2014 with new healthy habits. Most gyms and community centers will allow you to buy an introductory pass to try it out first; some studios also offer com-

plementary (read: free) visit for first-time guests. The options include yoga, spinning, boxing, dancing, Pilates, the Bar Method and an endless list of exercise classes. These gift certificates work best when you join in on the activity as well. 8. Cookbook You can find most recipes (and countless variations) on the Internet for free, but sometimes it’s nice to refer to a book you trust for its healthy, tasty recipes. I don’t own either of these books, but both are both on my Christmas wish-list this year: Power Hungry: The Ultimate Energy Bar Cookbook and The Athlete’s Plate: Real Food for High Performance. 9. Olive Oil Last year, one of my clients bought me a bottle of olive oil from the Vancouver Olive Oil Company. Not only is this product local and packed in very attractive, collectible bottles, but olive oil has many health benefits such as lowering your risk of heart disease and helping maintain blood insulin levels. 10. Give to charity If your friends really don’t need anything or will just buy it for themselves anyways, why not give to someone who could really use the money. Sending money to your favorite charity in your friend’s name is one of the most special gifts that everyone can appreciate. Kristina Bangma is a coach, personal trainer and writer with a love of riding and racing. Email your fitness questions to kristina@kitsenergy.com.

submitted photo

Chamois Butt’r helps cyclists avoid saddle sores.

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THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

sports&recreation

Give them the best kind of

Tupper’s scratch cuts deep

Christmas CHEER!

MEGAN STEWART Staff writer

M DAD

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ost basketball teams have a sixth man, the player a coach can rely on for minutes and points at a number of positions when starters get gassed. But the Tupper Tigers have a bench that goes much deeper. Head coach Jeff Gourley can turn to his roster and call up the 16th man. “We’ve had some very, very strong teams over the years but I guess of those strong teams, they were always anchored by an all-province or an all-Canadian player,” said Gourley. Tigers alumni include James Lum and Cameron Smythe, both players who excelled at Tupper and advanced to numerous MVP honours and to scholarships at CIS programs. “We don’t have one of those special kids on the team but I’ve got 16 kids who can all play.” At times during tight games, coaches have to ask themselves what player will hurt their team the least. Gourley says he’s lucky to have a different kind of problem. “Today, my biggest problem is getting them all playing time and keeping them happy because they are all talented. It’s a great situation for a coach to be in. No coach can complain about that.” The starters include seniors D.J. Segue, Ron Ronquillo and Sumit Gangar in addition to Grade 11 six-for-four forward Niko Mottus. Saurav Acharya, a Grade 12 student named an all-star at the Sotherland Classic earlier this month, starts for the Tigers at point guard. Two transfers from northern B.C., John Tait and Taylor Ross, are welcome and unexpected editions. The most athletically gifted player on the deep roster is Patrick Smythe, younger brother to the seven-foot alum and a very accomplished baseball player. The intangible quality with this group is commitment, said the coach. Each player buys

photo Dan Toulgoet

Tupper Tigers coach Jeff Gourley.

into to the program and many found their passion in elementary school when coaches like Gourley dropped in to run clinics and drum up excitement. To signal their dedication, the players spearheaded a fundraising drive to purchase new uniforms. They put close to $5,000 in the bank and bought flashy Nike uniforms at the cost of $175 each. The sentimentalists on the team also did their coach and school proud by approaching alumni for donations to improve the home and away team benches. The donor’s names will be engraved in the wood of the more comfortable seats. The Tigers have also found a suitable home thanks to the new AAAA tier. Always a AA school by the previous measurements, Tupper nonetheless played up at AAA. They were competitive some seasons but very far from the top in others. Now a AAA school and playing at that level, the Tigers are ranked No. 6 in B.C. and could go as far into playoffs as their bench is deep. “Now, instead of us competing against the schools that have 4,000 and 2,500 students, we can compete with those schools at around 600 or 800 like us.” mstewart@vancourier.com twitter.com/MHStewart

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F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

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sports&recreation

Snowsports program helps open up the slopes spends time together enjoying the winter sport. “It makes me feel happy,” she said, adding that her favourite things about skiing is going fast and making “pizza,” which is the snowplow shape skiers make to slow down and maintain control. Katrina’s mother Marta Carlucci said volunteers and adaptive ski equipment made a tremendous difference. Controlling the direction and speed of her skis took several years with the help of a key piece of equipment that hooked the tips of her skis together so Katrina could successful make the essential trianglular “pizza” shape. She now skis without any aids and her parents have joined her. “I went back and got all the ski equipment I needed,” said Carlucci, who outfitted herself and her husband as their daughter’s love for skiing grew. “We can go to Whistler now and we can have these days we spend together.” The Nelsons can relate. “It’s really life-changing. It’s elevated all of our quality of life,” said Nelson. “We’ve always tried new things with Nick. He’s got a really adventurous spirit.” For every two additional volunteers who join VASS, one more student is moved off a long waiting list and onto the snow. Volunteers are especially needed for weekend mornings. VASS weekend training sessions begin in January. For details, visit vass.ca or call 604-646-VASS (8277). mstewart@vancourier.com twitter.com/MHStewart

MEGAN STEWART Staff writer

A

ski and snowboard program that opens the slopes at Grouse, Seymour and Cypress mountains to people with developmental challenges is seeking more volunteers for January. Vancouver Adaptive Snow Sports supports nearly 100 skiers and snowboarders of all ages who otherwise might not ever have had the chance to lay first tracks in fresh powder. “VASS has been extremely positive and beneficial for our son,” said Monique Nelson, whose 15-year-old autistic son Nick has discovered independence and friendship on the slopes at Grouse Mountain. Once too inhibited by his fear of heights and moving at a fast speed, Nick now skis blue runs, rides the gondola and socializes in ways he didn’t before. “He self-talks his way through the gondola ride,” said Nelson. “He doesn’t talk much at all but that’s how much he’s motivated. He goes, ‘It’s OK, it’s OK…’ Nick’s trepidation comes from a feeling everyone who’s ever bounced up a vertical face can recognize. “It’s the sensation of when the gondola goes over the tower and when you have that elevator feeling in your stomach. He’s learned to have his own way of adapting.” Nick’s enjoyment for skiing has brought more than self-determination and new

photo Dan Toulgoet

Nick Nelson, 15, learned to ski with Vancouver Adaptive Snow Sports and his father Bryan now volunteers to help more children enjoy the slopes. His sister Julie also skis. athletic abilities. “He can be with his peers,” said Nelson. “It gives him a skill that helps him makes friends and to be with everyone else.” He joined his high school peers on a day trip to Whistler, a personal accomplishment that had him beaming for days. Although Nelson can’t ski because of her knees, the sport has become a family passion for Nick, his younger sister Julia and father

Bryan, who now volunteers at VASS with other children. “They bounce out of bed at six in the morning and get themselves ready and out the door,” said Nelson. “I like to ski together and we are both at kind of the same level because he can learn really well,” said Julia. “It’s another opportunity for me to spend time with him.” Katrina Carlucci, 14, also learned to ski with VASS and, like the Nelsons, her family now

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F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3 THE VANCOUVER COURIER

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Finding the right 4X4 for all four seasons with Brendan McAleer

A

long time ago, I used to drive a green Land Rover Series III around with a sticker in the rear window that read “The Best Four by Four by Far.” An extremely optimistic slogan, to be sure, and something of a case of pride goeth-ing before the fall. Still, even though the little Landie had a tendency to shed parts in a sort of automotive leprosy, it was pretty sure-footed in poor weather conditions. You had to stop the thing and get out to manually lock the front hubs, but once they were in place all hundred or so remaining horsepower could be unleashed and off you went to interfere with the simple quests of Kalahari bushmen or what-have-you. These days, I drive a Subaru, and you don’t really have to do anything when it starts snowing except repeat the mantra, “I’m not really a rally driver so I should probably slow down,” and promise your spouse that you certainly won’t be attempting manoeuvres like the Scandinavian Flick. Nope. Not a bit of it. Perish the thought. The Subaru is an all-wheel-drive vehicle rather than a 4x4 — at least, that’s what it says on the back. Yet in both cases all four wheels are being driven, so what’s the difference? Even further back than the asthmatic Land Rover, most cars were two-wheel drive. Four-wheel drive was only for the slippery stuff and involved manually locking the hubs as previously mentioned. Most systems also had a low-range gearbox for increasing low-speed climbing capabilities. In the Land Rover, this involved putting the car in neutral and fiddling with a pair of yellow and red floor-mounted levers, usually while swearing. Um. Usually while shouting encouragement. Yes. The change in this process came with the Landie’s snootier cousin, the Range Rover. Early Range Rovers had a lockable centre differential, allowing the front and rear wheels to turn at different speeds on a dry tarmac surface. Drive a locked-up four-wheel-drive car on pavement, and you can feel the front wheels scrub when you go around a corner. Just as the inside tires turn fewer times in a bend than those to the outside of a corner, the wheels in charge of steering need to spin at different rates than those out back. However, the Range Rover still had the ability to lock everything up and came with a crawling gear for getting out there in the wilderness and shooting some of it in the face. It was still a proper four-wheel drive. The next car that came along was perhaps the first crossover: the AMC Eagle. The Eagle didn’t have a low-range gearbox or a lockable centre differential, but they called it a 4x4 anyway. Pretty much here is where marketing got involved and the nomenclature went to hell in a four-wheel-drive handbasket. Audi came along with its Quattro system and called it allwheel drive. Fiat came along with a transverse-engined car and called it the Fiat Panda 4x4. Other companies called their systems 4WD or AWD. Currently, there are any number of branded systems available from BMW’s xDrive, to Mercedes’ 4Motion, to Subaru’s vaunted Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive. Given that every single manufacturer offers some sort of car-based crossover, hardly any of these systems are a true four-wheel drive in the original style. Most are so married to various electrically controlled traction systems that it’s less the mechanical bits that are important as much as a host of electronic brains. Basically, a “real” part-time four-wheel-drive system is usually found in a body-on-frame truck like a Nissan Xterra. These are rear-wheel-drive vehicles where the front wheels are engaged via a manual centre differential, but shouldn’t really be used except on snow or gravel. It’s the most rugged system, but not useful in the wet, and usually the least fuel-efficient. When a vehicle is derived from a front-wheel-drive application, the system most often only connects the rear differential

PLEASE READ THE FINE PRINT: Offers valid until January 2, 2014. See toyota.ca for complete details on all cash back offers. In the event of any discrepancy or inconsistency between Toyota prices, rates and/or other information contained on toyotabc.ca and that contained on toyota.ca, the latter shall prevail. Errors and omissions excepted. 2014 Corolla CE Automatic BURCEP-A MSRP is 19,945 and includes $1,645 freight and pre-delivery inspection, tire levy, battery levy and air conditioning federal excise tax. *Lease example: 2.9% Lease APR for 64 months on approved credit. Semi-Monthly payment is $89 with $2,350 down payment. Total Lease obligation is $13,742. Lease 64 mos. based on 120,000 km, excess km charge is $.07. Applicable taxes are extra. Down payment, first semi-monthly payment and security deposit plus GST and PST on first payment and full down payment are due at lease inception. A security deposit is not required on approval of credit. **Finance example: 1.9% finance for 60 months, upon credit approval, available on 2014 Corolla CE. Applicable taxes are extra. 2014 Tacoma Double Cab V6 4x4 Automatic MU4FNA-A MSRP is $32,965 and includes $1,815 freight and pre-delivery inspection, tire levy, battery levy and air conditioning federal excise tax. †Lease example: 4.9% Lease APR for 64 months on approved credit. Semi-Monthly payment is $165 with $3,400 down payment. Total Lease obligation is $23,906. Lease 64 mos. based on 120,000 km, excess km charge is $.10. Applicable taxes are extra. Down payment, first semi-monthly payment and security deposit plus GST and PST on first payment and full down payment are due at lease inception. A security deposit is not required on approval of credit. ††Finance example: 0.9% finance for 36 months, upon credit approval, available on 2014 Tacoma. Applicable taxes are extra. 2014 RAV4 Base FWD LE Automatic ZFREVT-A MSRP is $25,605 and includes $1,815 freight and pre-delivery inspection, tire levy, battery levy and air conditioning federal excise tax. ‡Lease example: 3.6% Lease APR for 64 months on approved credit. Semi-Monthly payment is $139 with $950 down payment. Total Lease obligation is $18,742. Lease 64 mos. based on 120,000 km, excess km charge is $.10. Applicable taxes are extra. Down payment, first semi-monthly payment and security deposit plus GST and PST on first payment and full down payment are due at lease inception. A security deposit is not required on approval of credit. ‡‡Finance example: 0.9% finance for 48 months, upon credit approval, available on 2013 RAV4. Applicable taxes are extra. Semi-monthly lease offer available through Toyota Financial Services on approved credit to qualified retail customers on most 48 and 60 month leases (including Stretch leases) of new and demonstrator Toyota vehicles. First semi-monthly payment due at lease inception and next monthly payment due approximately 15 days later and semi-monthly thereafter throughout the term. Toyota Financial Services will waive the final payment. Semi-monthly lease offer can be combined with most other offers excluding the First Payment Free and Encore offers. First Payment Free offer is valid for eligible TFS Lease Renewal customers only. Not open to employees of Toyota Canada, Toyota Financial Services or TMMC/TMMC Vehicle Purchase Plan. Some conditions apply. See your Toyota dealer for complete details. Visit your Toyota BC Dealer or www.toyotabc.ca for more details. Some conditions apply; offers are time limited and may change without notice. Dealer may lease/sell for less.

BRAKING NEWS

under slippage. These are the so-called “slip-and-grip” setups, though some lock up at low speed or under hard acceleration automatically, before the tires lose traction. Depending on the electric control type, these are the light duty option and provide the best fuel economy. However, their part-time nature can make them less effective. The all-wheel-drive systems that Mercedes and BMW use are built from rear-wheel-drive cars and have the ability to send more than half the power to the rear for better handling. In something like a BMW 3 Series, the all-wheel-drive car has better grip, but adding the drive to the front slightly reduces steering feel versus the rear-drive-only model. Lastly, we have the systems used by Subaru and Audi, where the differentials are integrated right into the transmission housing. It’s important to note that Subaru’s “Symmetrical” all-wheel drive is balanced side-to-side, not front-to-back. The high performance STI has an adjustable centre differential that can be tweaked for more tail-happy rear bias. A Forester is usually front-drive biased in its automatic trans-

mission application. However, all wheels are being driven at any one time, giving a better planted feel than the part-time systems, but with slightly poorer fuel economy. Which is best? Like anything else, it depends what you’re using it for. Given our mild, frequently damp West Coast climate, most of the time a simple transverse-engined all wheel drive will provide all the extra traction needed. Track day enthusiast with a year-round daily driver? Maybe something with a greater reardrive bias will suit. But let me end by saying this. No matter how good these systems get, from the incredible tarmac-shredding Nissan GTR to the go-anywhere Jeep Rubicon, not a single one of them will outperform a 10-year-old Honda Civic (or similar basic frontdriver) if the Civic’s got proper winter tires on when the snow starts flying. That “best Four by Four by Far” sticker is going to look pretty dumb on a truck that’s getting pulled out of a ditch. mcaleeronwheels@gmail.com twitter.com/brendan_ mcaleer

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JIM PATTISON TOYOTA DOWNTOWN 1290 Burrard Street (604) 682-8881 30692

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A44

THE VANCOUVER COURIER F R I DAY, DE C E M B E R 1 3 , 2 0 1 3

MERRY CHRISTMAS 100% BC Owned and Operated Prices Effective December 12 to December 25, 2013. ( 2 weeks ) We reserve the right to limit quantities. We reserve the right to correct printing errors.

Grocery Department

Meat Department Breyers Creamery Style Ice Cream

Salt Spring Organic Fair Trade Coffee assorted varieties

assorted varieties

from

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31%

SAVE

10.99

22%

400g • product of Canada

assorted varieties

SAVE

36%

3.99lb/ 8.80kg

1.66L

650g

SAVE

SAVE

38%

product of Canada

Uncle Luke's Organic Maple Syrup

19.99

salted or unsalted

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454g product of Canada

19%

36%

Armstrong Cheese

from

29%

2/4.98

155 - 198g product of USA

assorted varieties

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44%

600g product of Canada

Way Better Snacks Tortilla Chips assorted varieties

Dairyland Aerosol Real Whipped Cream

2.79

2.99

156g • product of USA

3/4.98

300 – 400g product of USA

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Walnuts and Pecans

Silly Cow Farms Hot Chocolate

Shiraz or Orange Brandy

assorted varieties

4.99

5.49

480g • product of USA

Bakery Department

27.99 54.99

8” Pumpkin Pie 480g or Cranberry Pecan Pumpkin Bread 300g

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2.00 off regular

retail price

travel size reg size

Incrediwear Socks and Braces

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All Sourdough Bread Rounds Levain Style or Rye all sizes

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Aroma Crystal Dream Cream

Rice Bakery

13.99

Rice Mince Tarts with Vegetarian Filling package of 7 or Rice Butter Tarts package of 5

90ml

Aroma Crystals Dream Cream is all natural. Dream Cream alleviates dry skin, roughness, cracking and itching. It helps you to relax with a soothing massage and creates a sense of well being.

1.00 off regular retail price

Choices’ Star of the Season Program

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November 1st – December 24th Your donation of only $2 supports the growth of healthy communities. Now in its 12th year, Choices’ Star of the Season Program enriches the lives of families all across Metro Vancouver and the Okanagan. Kindly donated by Calabar Printers, Choices’ Holiday Stars may be purchased between November 1st and December 24th for a donation of $2.00.

2010 - 2013 Awards. Your loyalty has helped Choices achieve these awards. Thank you!

assorted varieties

Spoonk Space Acupressure Mats

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225g • product of Canada

1.98

224g product of Canada

Bulk Department

price 250 – 560g

The Funky Gourmet Cranberry Sauce 375ml • product of Canada

Organic Cranberries

Health Care Department

Stahlbush Island Farms Frozen Vegetables

from 7.99

5.98

5lb bag product of Canada

20% off regular retail price

assorted varieties

4.79

4.98

5lb bag product of Canada

bags or bins

Barbara's Cheese Puffs

Fraser Valley Butter

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946ml

Choices’ Own Cranberry Sauce, Cranberry Stuffing, Specialty Turkey Gravy or Vegan Miso Gravy, Stuffed Specialty Turkey Breasts, Garlic Mashed Potatoes, Roasted Winter Root Vegetables or Grab and Go Specialty Turkey Meals

+deposit +eco fee product of USA

30%

product of Canada

31%

assorted varieties

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100g product of EU

6.99

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1L

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All that you need for Christmas Dinner:

R.W. Knudsen Just Cranberry Juice

light, amber, dark or medium

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Deli Department

assorted varieties

1 dozen

24%

3.99lb/ 8.80kg

19.99

1.6kg product of USA

Green and Black's Organic Fair Trade Chocolate Bars

4.49

German Butter Organic Potatoes from Across the Creek in Pemberton, BC

Organic Table Carrots from Fountainview Farm Lillooet, BC

never frozen

41%

product of Canada

Produce Department

Happy Chicken Roasting Chickens

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2/4.98

Vitala Omega-3 Free Run Large Eggs

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Tofurky Vegetarian Feast

Olympic Yogurt

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2627 W. 16th Ave. Vancouver 604.736.0009

3493 Cambie St. Vancouver 604.875.0099

1888 W. 57th Ave. Vancouver 604.263.4600

1202 Richards St. Vancouver 604.633.2392

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2615 W. 16th Vancouver 603-736-7522


Vancouver Courier December 13 2013