× January 20th 2014
N o . 14
#READALLABOUTIT #6TWEETUNDER #PAPERCUTS
THE REINCARNATION OF
SOCIAL MEDIA CATCHING FLU
47 issue N o . 14
All By My Selfie
Hot Chocolate Fest
Political Boo Boos
Kristi Alexandra Copy Editor
Cheryl Swan Art Director
Andrew Palmquist Production Manager
Scott Moraes Managing Editor
Ricky Bao Business Manager
the capilano courier
47 issue N o . 14
Leah Scheitel Editor-in-Chief
of this toned, tight, fit, university newspaper..... we aren't fit.
Katherine Gillard News Editor
Andy Rice Arts + Culture Editor
Therese Guieb Features Editor
Faye Alexander Opinions Editor
Jeremy Hanlon Caboose Editor
The Capilano Courier is an autonomous, democratically run student newspaper. Literary and visual submissions are welcomed. All submissions are subject to editing for brevity, taste, and legality. The Capilano Courier will not publish material deemed by the collective to exhibit sexism, racism or homophobia. The views expressed by the contributing writers are not necessarily those of the Capilano Courier Publishing Society.
Carlo Javier Staff Writer
Lindsay Howe Marketing + Web Editor
LETTER FROM THE EDITOR
Ezra levant's unintentional inspiration
Leah Scheitel × Editor-in-Chief
" If Mom and Dad paid to put you through journalism school and you’re typing the phrase ‘new couple alert’, you should just walk into the ocean." - Seth MacFarlane
Every January, aspiring student journalists from around the country muster in a random hotel for five days. It’s a tradition that the Canadian University Press (CUP) has continued for 76 years. Once there, students get to meet some of the industry's best and learn their tips, listen to keynote speakers like Robyn Doolittle, famed for breaking the Rob Ford crack-cocaine scandal, and of course, indulge in an obscene amount of alcohol. NASH, as the conference is called, is an amazing opportunity for student publications from coast to coast to mingle, and this year, I had the honour of going, along with 11 others from the Courier. During my five days at NASH, I think I had a total of 12 hours of sleep, and it was entirely worth it. I went to nearly every seminar, and fueled by Red Bull, stayed irregularly attentive for the duration of all of them. I had dinner with Omar Mouallem, a successful freelance journalist, which is one of my biggest aspirations. I watched former Courier Editor-in-Chief, and one of my good friends, JJ Brewis, give his first seminar about starting a personal brand, and gained five new Twitter followers without even trying. But the highlight must have been when the Courier staff had a karaoke battle with the Other Press from Douglas College. While a winner was never officially settled, I’m confident to say we came out on top of that battle. If anyone from the Other Press is reading this, just admit defeat. We had you guys at “Hello.” Our karaoke battle wasn’t the only controversy at NASH. The final keynote speaker on Saturday night was Ezra Levant, Canada’s equivalent to Bill O’Reilly, or a really masculine Ann Coulter. Many papers had written into CUP, protesting that their money was going to bringing in a speaker who basically makes his living by being mean, citing that someone more inspirational could have been chosen. But Levant, true to his reputation, spoke to these complaints during his keynote with a razor tongue. Right before starting his speech, he thanked the wait staff. “Thanks for removing the buns from the tables so they can’t be thrown at me,” he jested. It should also be noted that there were never any buns on the tables. To be honest, I didn’t know much about Levant before the announcement of his keynote. I opt to watch liberal media like Real Time with Bill Maher, and The Rick Mercer Report, because I’d rather hear my political news with a touch of sarcasm, not anger. But when I mentioned his name in passing to a lesbian friend, her face went red when she called him something along the lines of a “flaming asshole.” As he spoke to the 400-some delegates about having a career in media, he was honest, thought provoking, and completely repellant all at the same time.
THE VOICE BOX
“Everyone around me has been getting sick. My girlfriend, my parents, my sister, my uncle, my cat, my boss, and now even my teachers. I haven't even had a sneeze all season. What's wrong with me? Really, I don't even exercise.” Let's meet up. I've been sick since Christmas. If you think there's something wrong with you, I can try to get you sick. You probably just want to call in sick for work and miss class and watch TV. That's great, but really you should just be happy that you don't have to stay up all night coughing up blood. “I never used to play videogames, but I just bought a used PlayStation3 for Netflix, got a couple of games with it, and now I'm addicted to both Netflix and games. Fuck, you know. Fuck.”
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The Voicebox is back, ready to humbly respond to your questions, concerns, and comments about anything. To inquire, just send a text to 778 - 689 - 4642 to anonymously "express" and "voice" your "opinion" and "thoughts" on any "subject" or "issue". And, as long as it's not offensive, we will publish it here, right in the Voicebox. It's a win - win, or whine - whine - whatever way you look at it.
Hey Omar, no problem. We know you, a “successful” freelance writer, are much like a broke student – living off of loans and scrambling for your next free meal whenever you can get it. It’s funny, you weren’t the only successful freelancer that we met at the 76th year of NASH – or as it’s referred to on Twitter, #nash76. While you were scarfing down our sought after student meals, we were also meeting Esquire writer extraordinaire, Chris Jones, who was most often seen sitting alone at the front of a big yellow school bus among hundreds of drunk, horny university students. Like our EIC so eloquently put it, “If that’s your idea of success, you can have it.”
Technology lures you in and then enslaves you for life, doesn't it? From now on, you'll read about four books a year when you used to read 30, and your brain cells will all be gone within a decade. But at least you got to steal some cars, slay some zombies, and be a pirate in the Caribbean. That's cooler than living to be 100, right?
“@Omar_aok: Props to @CapilanoCourier for letting me masquerade as one of them yesterday to get through the buffet lineup inconspicuously. #nash76” via Twitter the capilano courier
WITH : SCOTT MORAES
He never once claimed to be a journalist and never said that he reported on the news objectively. What he’s made a career out of is having a strong opinion, and being offensive. And I don’t think anyone can deny that he’s done well at it. During his hour-long speech, delegates booed. Some left in a huff, while others, I’m sure, would have thrown the dinner buns, had there ever been any. But the dining hall at Edmonton’s Chateau Lacombe had never been more energized. People were angry, repulsed, and wanted to say something to argue against him. His polarizing speech invigorated the crowd, and it was the most excited I had ever felt about being a journalist. After the heated speech, there was an even more heated Q&A session. He called one delegate an asshole for not being very articulate while asking a question. He dodged the harder questions, like the one that our news editor, Katherine, asked about cyber bullying, by saying people need to be less sensitive. While a female delegate yelled at him about student loans, he suggested that she wait for Rachel Maddow to retire because the media needs “more ranting feminists.” Even before one guy asked his question, Levant told him that he “looked like a vegetarian.” It was lively, and I was completely riveted. While I disagreed with 90 per cent of what he was ranting about, I couldn’t help but admire the way he stuck to his convictions. I have seen many great speakers, like Don Iveson, Edmonton’s Mayor and former CUP President, and Chris Jones, an amazing writer at Esquire Magazine, but no one had filled me with that much inspiration in one speech. I walked out of there wanting to say something, and it felt empowering. Levant, you wicked genius. What I walked out with was the desire to do my job better – to have a more open mind, even on the opinions that I don’t agree with or that I find offensive. A desire to do more research, talk to more people, and read more about the issues I report on, to give it a more enriched voice. And just to be more educated, not to agree with Levant, or even Bill Maher all the time, but to be able to have a well constructed argument as to why I disagree. Conservatives like Levant aren’t going to listen to people who yell at them for the simple reason that he is a master at it, and will yell back. What they have to listen to is research done well and facts, and good reporting. Levant made me believe that's the only way to get my point across, and that’s exactly what I want to do. I’m not alone with my inspirations. Many of the Courier staff came back with ideas, views, and stories. We are half way through our publishing year, but we are as excited as we have ever been to be working together on the Courier. We've got another 11 issues, and if we have anything to do with it, they will be the best ones yet.
NEWS EDITOR × KATHERINE GILLARD
humanist billboard ads rejected WITHOUT GOD, WE'RE ALL PROMOTING HATE SPEECH Romila Barryman × Writer Billboards created by Centre for Inquiry intended to promote “evidence-based thinking” have been rejected in Vancouver. The advocacy group for free-thought, science, and skepticism created an ad which showcased a smiling woman with her laptop and coffee. The group’s slogan at the bottom reads, “Without God. We’re all good.” However, concern voiced from religious groups and online commenters were more targeted towards the phrase written beside the picture of the woman. “Jenn 13:1” it reads in an old scripture font, “Praying won’t help. Doing will.” A similar billboard campaign was run by CFI in New Westminster at the end of last year. Barbara Dumont, a teacher at the Simcoe County District School Board, commented on the website to state that she was “infuriated with the billboards” and that it countered Canadian multiculturalism. “I love that we all come from different customs and faiths and I enjoy learning about all of them,” she wrote, “as someone once said to me in a truly meaningful conversation regarding philosophical matters, ‘If you wish me to respect your beliefs and listen to what you have to say, you need to first show me that you will respect my beliefs and listen to what I have to say.’” “We are an educational charity. This is part of our educational mandate to point out the dangers and inherent flaws of religious or superstitions,” CFI board member Pat O’Brien explained that the
× Megan Collinson
billboards were not a means of countering religion, but merely a chance to spark debate. O’Brien commented, “[The ads] are showing that biblical verses are man-made and as such can be questioned or corrected and may be illogical. So when our characters say the things they say it simply opens discussions.”
Randy Otto, president of Pattison Outdoor, stated in an interview with CBC that the organization proposed the ads, understanding it might not be received. “And now they're suggesting that taking their ad and going away is somehow a violation of their human rights,” Otto expressed. The group may file a human rights complaint
against Pattison Outdoor for their refusal to run the billboard ads on the basis that the content was presented in a civil and well-thought-out manner. “I think they are respectful in that they are honest,” O’Brien emphasizes. “Being honest is really the most respectful thing you could do. The fact that someone disagrees with us is fine but we simply can't make a billboard thinking of how we can’t offend every person in public. Instead, we wanted to make sure we were not poking fun, saying that anyone's belief is ridiculous – and we didn’t.” Amidst the debate and opinions voiced from either sides, O’Brien says the campaign in New Westminster alone been a success for the group. “In the last couple of months, since the controversy first started, we've received dozens of inquiries from people who have never heard we existed,” he revealed. “[The billboards are] not there to change religious people's minds. It's for people to know that there is a community of people out there and there's an organization out there that shares the same beliefs and understanding of the world.” The organization is funding the campaign via a $20,000 donation, whose donor specifically requested the donation be used towards billboard campaigns and are adamant in respecting those wishes.
free signals PORTLAND HOTEL SOCIETY HANDING OUT LIFE-LINES Faye Alexander
the capilano courier
47 issue N o . 14
× Opinions Editor
In December, hundreds of old cellphones were being donated to seniors living in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside (DTES). The Portland Hotel Society (PHS) conducted a survey, which found that 20 per cent of residents in the DTES are seniors, many of whom are without access to a landline or cellphone. The results bolstered PHS to launch the initiative to round up spare cellphones, which would otherwise wind up recycled or lifeless in a landfill. The PHS survey revealed that 97 per cent of seniors living in the DTES were below the poverty line, with 86 per cent residing in low-income housing. With the majority of these seniors having no access to a phone, they consequently do not have access to 9-1-1. With these low-income seniors vulnerable to food insecurity, and increased health risks, PHS looks to instill a sense of security for those citizens. Recent federal cutbacks in acute care have directly impacted the availability of both home support and residential care for seniors. Seven community partners came together alongside PHS, including VanCity, city hall, the Vancouver Police Department, Telus, and Free Geek. Drop boxes were distributed at seven Vancity branches and two community centres in hopes of collecting 500 cellphones. Donors were asked to remove their SIM (Subscriber Identity Module) card, wiping their old phones clear of all personal
details. The City of Vancouver donated 75 BlackBerries, with Telus pitching in as well. The staff of Free Geek ensured all personal information was removed, had the cells refurbished, and provided instruction details for the next user. Free Geek, a non-profit community organization, has been helping to reduce the environmental impact of electronic waste by both using and recycling donated technology, so it was natural for their company to join forces with PHS’s cellphone drive initiative. Free Geek depends on volunteers to run their program, and it was those committed volunteers of Free Geek who swiped the donated cellphones clean for the senior citizens on the DTES. “It’s quite simple,” explains Roger Moon, a volunteer at Free Geek. “After you take the SIM card out, most phones usually have a reset button which will wipe your hard-drive, keeping the original software but clearing any user history.” Donors need not fear any embarrassing photos or Internet history popping up for an unsuspecting senior residing in the DTES. “It will lead to people being able to connect to emergency services that they need at that time. It’s almost like medic-alert,” says Moon. “I wanted to give back to my community. I think PHS was onto something great that will help a lot of people.” PHS was able to exceed their original goal of collecting 500 old phones. Wavefront, a mobility and
wireless solutions company based in Vancouver, presented their donation of 300 phones prior to a special bus tour of the Bright Nights Christmas lights at Stanley Park. With the excess of donations, the remaining cellphones collected were distributed through other programs offered by PHS to sex-trade workers or victims of domestic violence also living in the DTES community. “We have numerous examples of where the phone has come in handy – whether it’s a medical emergency for an elderly person or if they are in a situation of domestic violence, or perhaps something has occurred on the street, they’re to use the phone to connect with the police or another emergency provider and we’re able to render assistance,” Inspector Michelle Davey of the Vancouver Police Department told the Georgia Straight. “It’s a tremendously valuable program.” The ability for any and all phones to connect with 9-1-1 despite having a service or being assigned a network is a Federal Communications Commission rule intended as a safety feature. Many will benefit from having easy access to emergency services, with some phone models being able to connect with a dead battery as the phone will access an emergency power supply. “It’s brilliant that the government stepped in and made it a requirement for all phones to be able to access 9-1-1 – especially for the elderly. That’s
× Jocelyn Wong
using technology for the good and not just for the profit,” explains Moon. The PHS has created a great deal of security for the elderly population in the DTES. Although the holiday drive reeled in great success for the PHS initiative, the donations don’t have to stop there. Instead of destroying old cellphones for a new sexier model, those old cells can still be donated to other people in need within Vancouver and in our own community. Battered women’s shelters and humanitarian organizations can put those old cellphones to good. Trading up for a new phone has never felt so good.
catching flu H1N1 VIRUS SPREADS THROUGH CANADA Keara Farnan × Writer Despite Health Canada authorizing the H1N1 vaccine, the same virus that hit in fall 2012, the strain of influenza sometimes known as Swine Flu is back for round two. Toronto has reported seven deaths due to the illness and Alberta has reported 10 deaths and 40 patients in intensive care as well as another 300 other patients being treated in hospitals. While the term H1N1 is somewhat meaningless to the general population, it is essentially a strain of flu that originated in pigs, and therefore is also known as Swine Flu. The European 1918 flu pandemic, which killed millions of people in Europe, is believed to have been an earliest form of the H1N1 virus. H1N1 is a very serious health issue with people becoming contagious even before symptoms appear. Symptoms of H1N1 include cough, fever, sore throat, stuffy or runny nose, body aches, headache, chills, and fatigue. “Most healthy people who get the flu, including H1N1, have it resolve itself on its own without medication or need to see a doctor. Seniors, pregnant women, children, people with asthma, cancer and diabetes, obesity etc. are at risk for complications if they do get the flu, and so would have those complications treated by doctors,” adds Anna Marie D’Angelo, senior media relations officer from the Vancouver Public Health team. Anyone can be infected; adults can be sick for approximately seven days while kids can take up to 10 days to fully recover from this illness. “Thirty to 60 year olds are most prone and this is a slightly younger group than usually gets the other strains of the flu,” says D’Angelo. However, there are many ways in which this condition can be prevented.
× Arin Ringwald
According to Vancouver Coastal Health Club, some ways to avoid getting the flu include having a flu shot, washing your hands regularly, coughing into your elbow and not going out if you might have the flu or any other illness as to ensure you don’t get any weaker or spread the virus to others. If you experience severe flu symptoms such as shortness of breath, blue or grey lips, or seizures, you should seek medical help right away. If you are admitted to a hospital, you will be placed in a separate room away from other patients to avoid further spread of the virus. You will be required to wear a mask and the nurses and doctors taking care of you will be wearing masks as well. If a patient is dehydrated they will be given in-
travenous fluids – a mixture of water and salts, and a tube will be inserted in one of the veins in the arms. Some patients may begin to experience low oxygen levels, doctors will place an oxygen mask on the mouth to help them breathe. During the flu season, people should be mindful of during flu season are: vaccinations do not always fully prevent you from getting H1N1 influenza, facemasks are not always effective, do not go out with someone who has the flu.
Diagnosing Swine Flu and Seasonal Flu is a very difficult task since the symptoms are much the same as pneumonia and respiratory failure. H1N1 and all flus are viral, antibiotics are not effective, and most people are able to recover on their own. Only if bacterial infections take hold are antibiotics prescribed. Flu shots can be obtained through family doctors, walk-in clinics, the Vancouver Coastal Health Travel Clinic and drug stores. Although some people do not believe in getting the flu vaccination, VCH medical professionals conclude that it is more helpful to get the vaccination than to be without as the flu season continues. Health Canada has proven the vaccine to be both safe and effective, having employed the most advanced science available to ensure effectiveness for the vaccines. Many Canadians already have their flu shot, although B.C. has recently reported risk of running out which makes it crucial for those who want vaccines to go get them as soon as possible. In the past there has been a shortage of flu shots to go around – fortunately, this year almost everyone is able to seek treatment in order to help prevent direct contact with the H1N1 virus. It is never too late to get vaccinated because the shot does contain coverage against various H1N1 strains. Even though the virus rarely spreads from person to person, health professionals from the Vancouver Health Public Centre still suggest that if a traveler appears to be too ill to travel on an airplane, he or she may require a medical assessment. An onlooker should contact an emergency department of a local hospital in the case that the individual has had any exposure to the H1N1 flu strain. To report influenza related cases the Vancouver Public Health team can be reached at 604-675-3900 or 1-855-675-3900.
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bringing change to capilano MUSIC, PROGRESSIVE CAUSES AND BEER BRING STUDENTS TOGETHER James Martin × Writer and the Tacofino taco truck that was parked just outside the south doors. In the same space as the food and drink, booths had been set up by several of Capilano's various clubs and organizations promoting community and social justice issues. It was a prime opportunity for these groups to interact with students who were relaxed and hanging out in one place, rather than rushing to grab a quick lunch before their next class. Inside the main gymnasium portion of the building, the space had been transformed into a concert venue. A massive stage with a full sound system and lighting rig had been erected, the sport-surface flooring had been all covered up, and further back in the room tables and seats had been placed. The room was dimly lit, drawing all attention to the action on the stage. Greg Drummond, the first musical act of the evening, joked about finally having a chance to play a high school prom when he stepped in front of the microphone (the converted gymnasium definitely had a bit of that vibe to it). The people in the room moved in closer as Drummond, supported by his skilled band, kicked off their set with the instantly recognizable song "Walking Man". The crowd quickly warmed up and, in a few cases, started to dance. For the next half-hour or so, the band proceeded to keep heads bobbing and toes tapping with Drummond's signature style of laid-back West Coast indie-folk music. It seemed like his set was over all-too-fast when he said goodnight. But with the evening's events now underway, the stage wasn't left empty.
Slam poet Dini Dini soon got the crowd fired up with her strong words condemning the government's willingness to ship oil through the province's pristine wilderness. Then, Tamo Campos, co-founder of Beyond Boarding, told the story of how his organization was founded around their goal to spread interest in humanitarian work through the snowboarding community. The next speaker to hit the stage was a 12-yearold girl who stole the show. Ta'kaiya Blaney of the Sliammon First Nation is a singer, songwriter, actor, and activist who has traveled the world spreading her message of environmental protection and respect for First Nations cultures. Blaney was captivating, speaking with conviction and holding the crowd's attention even in the sparse moments where she found herself momentarily searching for the right words. She implored the audience to take action in order to ensure that we can all enjoy a future in where we can freely drink from wild streams and breathe in the air around us without needing to worry about what contaminates might be hidden within. As she closed out her speech, she invited members of The Boom Booms, the headlining act of the concert, to join her for the performance of two of her original songs. The moment lead singer Aaron Ross and his fellow musicians took to the stage, the crowd swelled up to the front of the room. It was instantly clear that The Boom Booms were the primary draw for the audience this evening. Blaney's songs were delivered with vocal precision and hauntingly powerful impact beyond her years, leaving the crowd wanting more after the second one concluded.
Before the big musical finale, Ross took to the stage again to speak from his own experiences about how easy it can be to make a real positive impact in the world, and how The Boom Booms have helped make change throughout the world through their music. He then called the rest of his band on stage to back him up on an impromptu performance of a poem he had written just that evening, drawing from the themes of social justice and environmental protection that had been covered by all the speakers on that stage before him. "Leave it to the bass player," Ross jested as bassist Geordie Hart led the rest of the group in an improvised groove to back Ross' rhymed words. At long last, the moment everyone had been waiting for arrived. The Boom Booms began their set. Dancing broke out, balloons were tossed about, and the band filled the room with their signature sound and moves. The full extent of the stage's fancy lighting rig was put to use, and the smoke machines worked overtime. The only hiccup in the performance was when a sudden burst of extremely loud feedback sent the band crumpling to the floor covering their ears mid-song, the intensity of the noise accentuated on stage by the monitors. The tune was picked up again only a few beats later, but with the wind temporarily taken out of its sails. The technical mishap was soon forgotten as the night carried on and The Boom Booms kept the crowd happily moving in ways that it seems only The Boom Booms can pull off.
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You wouldn't normally expect to find a crowd of Capilano students spending their Friday night oncampus, but that's exactly what happened on Jan. 10 at the CSU's Concert4Change. "Capilano's never had an event this big before," explained Desirée Wallace, CSU environmental issues coordinator, just hours before Concert4Change was scheduled to kick off. "Concert4Change is an initiative to bring the community of Capilano together for a networking opportunity and so we can generate a coalition amongst all the faculty and staff and administration, and to utilize the power of local musicians and activists to mobilize the audience and get people more engaged in making positive change on and off campus," Wallace adds. It may sound complicated concept, but the 370 people who showed up and the smooth execution of the evening's events made it apparent that Wallace and her collaborators clearly knew what they were doing. Several factors contributed to the carefullycrafted appeal of this campus event on a Friday night. Concert4Change was absolutely free for any current Capilano students to attend, and only $5 for non-students. Another big selling point was the availability of local beer for sale (a rare occurrence on the otherwise unofficially dry campus) in conjunction with a free shuttle that ran between Capilano and Phibbs Exchange. Early in the evening, the majority of the people in attendance could be found in the well-lit hallway of the Sportsplex, in close proximity to the lineups for the beer booth
[ o ] James Martin Ta'Kaiya Blaney sang beautiful songs. She is such a gem!
[ o ] James Martin Local heart-throbs the Boom Booms serenaded the crowd.
arts + Culture
A + C EDITOR ×
Taste of the town A STUDENT'S GUIDE TO DINE OUT VANCOUVER Calvin deGroot × Writer A combination of the holidays and the always expensive first week of classes has drained the bank accounts of many students across the city, but Dine Out Vancouver arrives to provide much needed relief to student finances. The festival, already underway, runs from Jan. 17 to Feb. 2. Presented by Tourism Vancouver, Dine Out Vancouver is Canada’s largest eating-out festival, and the fourth largest culinary event in North America. In 2002, Dine Out emerged as a way to celebrate Vancouver’s culinary diversity while providing the much needed sales boost for restaurants during the postholiday/pre-Valentine’s Day lull. “Post-holidays, residents of this city tend to cocoon,” says festival organizer Lucas Pavan. “It is definitely a slower time of year, but now that is changing.” Each year, thousands of thrifty Vancouverites – including diners, foodies, and students alike – descend upon Vancouver’s finest restaurants to take advantage of low-priced, high-quality food and wine. “Originally, the festival was designed for locals, but we are now seeing visitors from all over the world,” Pavan explains. “Vancouver is known internationally as a high-quality culinary city because of its multiculturalism and access to fresh ingredients.” Dine Out 2014 is featuring a record high 263 participating restaurants providing slimmed down prices for any culinary styles. Each restaurant offers a unique three-course, fixed-price menu at $18, $28, or $38 per person.
STUDENT FRIENDLY Students are quick to focus primarily on the $18 menu, and there are some fantastic options at this price level. Some of the top rated menus this year are The Cannibal Café (Commercial), Romer’s Burger Bar (Kitsilano), The Reef (two locations), and Atithi Indian Cuisine (Downtown). And why not have students support students as well? Granville Island’s Pacific Institute for Culinary Arts (PICA) usually offers a $26 three-course menu and is once again participating with an $18 menu that rivals many of the $28 offerings.
Lastly, Kitsilano Japanese restaurant, Hapa Izakaya, is offering not three, but four courses for $18. Out of the four award-winning Hapa Izakaya locations in Vancouver, the Kitsilano location is the only one with the $18 four-course menu. The other Hapa restaurants are doing the $28 menu, yet still with four courses.
BEST VALUE Spending the extra $10 will go a long way. In terms of value, a $28 dollar menu can often be significantly better than some of the $18 menus. Patrick Heywood, Chef at North Vancouver’s Fishworks warns that many restaurants, particularly in the $18 range, are only interested in Dine Out for the free advertising and simply aim to get people in and out as quick as possible and simply will not provide a memorable experience. For something truly special, Heywood recommends diving into the $28 range and visiting places like Maenam and The Oakwood Bistro, both in Kitsilano. With so many great participating restaurants this year, Heywood believes that what diners should choose is really up to their own discretion and simply depends on the kind of food they want to eat. However, Heywood argues that there is still an important strategy for choosing restaurants, which is trying newly established places. “Newer places have more to prove than established restaurants, it’s a great way for them to promote their products and advertise.” Larger corporate restaurants, he explains, will undoubtedly still have good food, but it will be more generic lobster and steak entrees that only bring in money. For example, all of the restaurants and pubs owned by the Donnelly Group – like The Lamplighter, The Butcher and Bullock, and Cinema – are all featuring exactly the same three-course Dine Out menu. According to Heywood, any menus that need to be massproduced on a scale that large simply will not be able to deliver the quality and charm of a smaller place really trying to do something special. Hey-
× Vivian Liu wood’s advice: “Avoid large corporate chains like the plague.” New restaurants including Pidgin, Bambudda, and Ask For Luigi have all been established within the last year and are first-time Dine Out participants. An evening of ultimate value often involves visiting two locations, and bringing a big appetite along for the ride. Merchants Oyster Bar on Commercial Drive is doing something unique this year by opting out of the dessert course all together. They are still offering three courses, but all three are savoury. Their menu features fresh shucked oysters, beef tartare, seafood chowder, and some unique all-vegetarian options. Outside of their Dine Out menu, merchants will be offering dessert options at their regular prices. However, just a short Skytrain ride away is downtown’s Bella Gelateria, who is doing an all-dessert menu with five options. Customers can pick three out of the five with portions large enough for two to share, giving diners a deliciously unique experience for
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For the most relaxing and enjoyable Dine Out experience at any establishment, it’s best to avoid peak hours. This can be done by making a reservation between Monday and Thursday – and the later in the evening the better. Most diners will be seeking either 5 p.m. or 7 p.m. reservations and most restaurants will be hectic, crowded, and in true Dine Out fashion, under-staffed. For later reservations, servers – although getting tired by then – will be able to provide a more comfortable, friendly experience. For more information on Dine Out Vancouver and a full list of this year’s participating restaurants, visit dineoutvancouver.com
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Alva Tee × Writer
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47 issue N o . 14
In just over three years, a nifty little smartphone app known as Instagram has rapidly risen to the top in a social craze as the ruler of life through photography. Most who use it are known to be refreshing feeds whenever possible in hopes that something new will pop up – an addiction that carries over to Facebook and Twitter as well. Yet, when scrolling through their news feeds, users often find themselves scrunching up their faces due to some of the content posted. That’s because not all of it is well-conceived. People are inclined to follow their friends, family, and co-workers back – it’s like an unspoken social rule. Unfortunately, this also means being subjected to some bad photography. Setting aside all of the fancy filters and fade effects, it takes a clear, well-composed photo to create a successful Instagram post. And while knowing a thing or two about photography certainly doesn’t hurt, expert Melissa Dex Guzman insists that it’s far more important to know the basic features of your smartphone’s built-in camera. “It’s all automatic, so in darker situations, the phone will either need to fire a flash – or with most phones, an LED light – or will require to expose for longer,” explains the Vancouver-based freelance photographer. “If you are out with friends at a dark restaurant for Dine Out Vancouver, a lot of those places don’t have much light, so you’ll have to hold the camera still for longer. If you’re taking photos of your friends without a flash, they will have to hold still for you too. This way you don’t get any blur.” Unfocused photos are the biggest complaint Guzman has with many of the posts that come up in her feed. “There’s so many blurry camera photos shared on Facebook and Instagram these days,” she says. “Basics are important.” A simple tap of the screen can go a long way to fixing the problem, and tapping different parts of it can get different results. If a darker area of the photo about to be captured is tapped, the camera will focus to that and make the image appear brighter. The same goes for tapping on a lighter area, which will make the image appear darker. Holding a finger on a certain area of the screen will lock the lens focus in place and override the camera’s automatic focus, allowing for a blurred background effect or extra clarity of certain objects – effects usually only achieved with a fullsized DSLR camera.
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× Kelsey Holden
Once the technicalities of a smartphone’s camera are learned, trying to find the right filter is a great additive to the result of a good Instagram photo. While Guzman believes the in-house filters on Instagram are useful and worth playing around with, she insists that finding the right application for them is definitely a necessity. “Some of the filters darken, some of them lighten, some of them make the photo orange, some more blue,” she says. “You’ll have to pick a filter that compliments the original image – if an image is too dark, find one that lightens it. If a photo is taken indoors and already naturally yellow, don’t add an orange/yellow oriented filter – go with a cold/blue one.” External apps such as Afterlight, VSCO Cam, and Picfx can provide softer filters and photo correction tools not offered in Instagram. Images can
be captured, edited, and retouched in a variety of separate programs and then imported into one’s photo sharing app of choice. “And of course, there’s nothing wrong with no filter,” Guzman adds with a wink. After all, filters are intended to compliment the photo being posted – it shouldn’t be the only reason a photo is postable. If no filter looks good on a photo, perhaps it just isn’t Instagram material. It all comes down to taking the time to know how to use the features given, on the smartphone and on the app itself. Knowing what the image will intend to showcase or accomplish before posting it is another important thing to consider. “With food, for example, some people really like to get nice and close,” says Guzman. “Some people like to show off the overall presentation.” “Also with selfies, the same applies,” she contin-
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ues. “Sometimes you want to show off a cute outfit or accessory. Some of us are a little self-conscious so some people may opt to angle the photo in such a way that flatters their body type.” Just like every photo, every Instagrammer is unique, and what one likes and dislikes greatly depends on personal style. Finding a niche on Instagram can be difficult at first, but doing it while producing great photos – regardless of what they’re of – is easier than it seems. As Guzman points out, “It’s all about catering and being true to your eye.”
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back with a bang VANCOUVER SKETCH COMEDY RETURNS WITH A VENGEANCE Kelly Mackay × Writer Vancouver’s once-defunct sketch comedy festival is restarting this year with an outstanding lineup of hilarious performances and outrageous comedy. From Jan. 23 to 25, the festival will be taking place on two main stages located centrally on Granville Island. Artistic director Peter Carlone has extensive experience within the comedy industry and was recently awarded a Canadian Comedy Award for his show with Chris Wilson, Peter n’ Chris. He teamed up with producer Alistair Cook and assistant producer Max Tennessen to resurrect the festival, a move Cook hopes will “restart the furnace of sketch comedy” in this city. When it comes to Vancouver, the demographic of culture is broad and diverse. Having such diversity in one area makes comedic and cultural growth inevitable. “We are an emerging city,” remarks Cook of Vancouver’s comedy scene. “There are so many concepts and ideas from different people, there is a cocktail of comedy within Vancouver.” The upcoming festival will encourage locals to drink it up, with performances from already huge comedic names such as Andrew Barber – co-host of CITY TV’s Beer Money – to Titmouse!, a locallybased sketch comedy troupe who has been featured on Funny or Die and Tosh.0. The amount of International Award recipients performing within the festival has created a
recipe for hilarity, and an extensive schedule will suit the taste of any audience. One double bill in particular, listed for 7:30 p.m. on Jan 25, perhaps best exemplifies the breadth of programming. The performance puts Idle Minds, a group claiming to have “little to no sense of tact, taste or acceptable social behaviour” alongside polar opposites James and Jamesy. Seeing how “extended physicality, rich emotion, and surreal trips of the imagination” hold up next to all things crass will surely be a treat for festival-goers. With ticket prices standing small at $15, the festival offers as much value as it does talent. And for those who are unable to attend all three performance days, the extensive roster will inevitably make the decision a very difficult one. The festival has also received sponsorship by the Burrard Hotel, an eclectic hotel located in Downtown Vancouver, useful for those wanting to invite friends or family from out of town. And for those interested in performing or getting involved with sketch comedy in other capacities, organizers have put together two workshops as part of the festival. The first took place earlier in January, hosted by Canadian Comedy Award-winning sketch comedian Chris Wilson. Another will take place on Jan. 25 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., hosted by Mark Little and Kyle Dooley. With their sketch comedy success and experience touring the fringe
× Cheryl Swan
festival circuit, the two are a wealth of knowledge on all things funny. Their workshop will focus on the structure of crafting a story into a “hot comedy”, and taking a basic skeletal structure and morphing it into something fresh and hilarious. For students especially, Cook strongly recommends the workshops. “The guys taking it are very talented, having been in Fringe Festival and other comedy shows. It would be good experience for those interested in getting involved.”
Starting the New Year with a comedic bang, the 2014 Vancouver Sketch Comedy Festival will serve as a reminder that Vancouver, despite being small, has a niche for the perfect “cocktail of comedy” – shaken and stirred this January by some of the funniest people in the city. For tickets and more information, visit Vancouversketchfest.com.
capital punishment WHEN MUSIC, VIDEO GAMES AND ICE STORMS COLLIDE Mike Allen × Writer
47 issue N o . 14
Indiegogo campaign with some interesting perks if fans donated enough money, such as being able to commission a favourite video game tune to be arranged and played by the band. “This project would have happened with or without the Indiegogo, simply because we wanted it really hard,” reveals Houlden. “That being said, we would be super broke had we not used it. We do have plans to use the platform again, but long term it would be nice if we could actually make enough money as a band that we don't have to crowd-fund every project.” “The recording for Warp Zone went really smoothly, all things considered,” he continues. “Being a well-rehearsed, educated band that reads music made the whole process really smooth,” adds Dobson. And now, missingNo can add well-travelled to that list -- although that wasn’t quite so easy. To learn more about this band of Vancouver video game jazz mavericks or to buy their album, visit Missingnoband.com
ered renting a car for the 40-hour drive from D.C. to Seattle - but after some thought that idea was passed on. The hotel was nice enough to extend the MAGFest reduced rate for the remainder of our stay, and we had travel insurance which covered some of the expenses during our extra days.” The members admit it wasn't all travel headaches. In fact, the highlight of the trip was something Bae wouldn’t have found had it not been for their layover: a cheesy pretzel dog. “They sell a cheesy pretzel dog,” he exclaims. “It’s a hot dog covered in pretzels and cheese.” When it was finally time for their flight home, TSA agents nearly had to pry them out of his hands during the preboarding security check. Now safely back in Vancouver, missingNo has several projects on the go. They just recently finished recording their debut EP, entitled Warp Zone -- another video game reference -- which was independently released. Funding for the album was mostly covered by the band members themselves, although they did get some help from a successful
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When ice storms grounded flights and caused massive delays earlier this month, Vancouver band missingNo found their travel plans literally frozen in time. What was supposed to be a weekend trip to the United States capital turned into an ordeal that lasted over a week. But just like the unusual nature of their music – jazz-infused covers of video game tunes – the band’s reaction was pretty atypical as well. They laughed. “When we got the phone call from our travel agent about our flight being cancelled we were all half drunk in the hotel room and I remember us all bursting into laughter at the news,” says trumpet player Thomas Houlden. Many more drinks would be poured that week – over ice. MissingNo is made up of students and alumni from the Capilano Jazz Studies program and aptly named after a video game reference – a glitch in the first generation of Pokemon games. Houlden and the six other members of the band -- Michael Klein – tenor sax, Luis Melgar – trombone, Eric Wettstein – guitar, Leo Bae – piano, Alex Dobson – bass, Trent Otter – drums – all share a mutual appreciation for video games both classic and new, and especially the music that accompanies the gameplay. Obviously the next step after finding this shared interest was to create a band that plays jazzed up arrangements of some of their favourite songs from their favourite games. “The band started as a love affair of videogame music and culture. Being friends in a jazz school, we would always try and get things together to
jam on some video game songs and arrange them in a unique and inspiring fashion,” explains Wettstein. “One year it all finally came together, before disbanding the next year as our bassist left to do cruise ship gigs and our drummer moved to the Island. But we had such good times we figured we'd give it another push and the ball has been swiftly rolling from there.” Swiftly rolling indeed. It turns out that missingNo’s love affair of mixing video games and music is shared by more than the seven band members – so many that the band was invited to play at Washington DC's MAGFest, a four-day music and gaming expo. “A gentleman who decided on the roster at MAGFest found our music and strongly hinted that we should apply. We did, and the rest was history,” says Wettstein of their chance at the opportunity. The music portion of the trip went well for the band. “Our set was really well received at the festival, and we've been approached for collaboration and/or touring with a few other bands because of it,” says Houlden. But as great as the performance itself was, the act of getting to D.C. and back turned out to be way more of a hassle than anyone could have expected. Right in the middle of MAGFest, a polar vortex hit the state – or in layman's terms, it got really, really, really cold. “The arctic vortex coming down into the eastern states cancelled something like 17,000 flights during the course of our trip,” adds Dobson. “Getting stuck for a few more days had mixed reactions,” recalls Houlden. “We all either had work or school – or both – that we were scheduled for the day after our return, so we all kind of got messed up in that regard. At one point we consid-
Lip sliding rails, nose pressing boxes
THE CULTURAL SIDE OF CAMPUS
Carlo Javier × Staff Writer
× Carlo Javier
How many schools offer snowboarding on campus? Whatever the answer is, one of them is CapU. Last year, Connor Halliwell decided to start Rail Jam, an on-campus snowboarding and skiing event. With the use of truck-transported snow, a couple of ramps and the open space at the Library Courtyard, Halliwell’s project became something of a legend. This year, third-year tourism management students Kate Phifer and Laure Pottie took up the mantle and continued on what they hope to become an annual tradition at CapU. “We decided to do this one more time, it’s part of the social change, part of the project for the course itself,” says Pottie. Impressively, the second iteration of Rail Jam proved to be a lot more successful than the first one. “So far we’ve doubled everything from last year,” begins Pottie. “We doubled the people, doubled the snow, the rails, and the prices.” With two ramps and two rails, as well as the presence of an enthusiastic crowd, Phifer and Pottie don’t see a reason why Rail Jam shouldn’t or wouldn’t continue for many years. “This is the second one and we’re hoping that somebody takes it on,” says Phifer. “We’re also actually working on a legacy project where we’re making a handbook and whoever does it will have a guide to help them out,” she adds. A mid-January tradition of Rail Jam is not only
CAP-ture of the week
weather-friendly, it also gives students an event to look forward to. “The timing works out really well because it’s the beginning of the school year,” says Pottie. “And the fact that there’s not much snow on the mountains,” Phifer adds. One aspect of Rail Jam is its involvement with fundraising. “We’re doing it all for Beyond Bording and The Harvest Project,” explains Phifer. Beyond Boarding is a local snowboarding organization who channels the positive energy of their sport community into helping the development of countries and communities. “They help in building homes and they’re constantly donating to those in need,” says Pottie. On the other hand, the Harvest Project is a “community-based urban relief organization who reaches out to people across Metro Vancouver and the North Shore, particularly those who have suffered from dysfunction in their homes, job loss and poverty.” Another intangible contribution of Rail Jam is its promotion of snowboarding and skiing, two undeniably popular sports in Canada, particularly in North Vancouver. “I think it’s super important that [Rail Jam] continue to promote snowboarding. I was in outdoor rec managements here at Cap and the snowboarding community keeps it connected, active, and involved,” says Phifer.
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The Other Press hugs the Capilano Courier. Captured by @mrcarlojavier
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Petroleum Pirates STOLEN GAS, CREDIT DATA, EXPLODING VANS
Calvin deGroot × Writer
When Hurricane Sandy battered the shores of New York City it left behind a wake of destruction and chaos. Limited supplies were delivered to the area and the city faced a gas crisis. Cars lined up at gas stations for hours as its citizens struggled to resume their lives. Other residents, seeing the crisis as an opportunity, stocked up on gas, filled Jerrycans, and took them to the streets to sell gasoline for $8, $10, and even $20 a gallon ($10 per litre). The city of Vancouver is facing its own gas crisis regarding inclining prices. Gas prices in Vancouver are the highest in the country and some residents are also viewing it as an opportunity for a profitable black-market for gasoline.
Emerging Gas Thieves
× Kristen Wright
Montague explains that, “This is nothing new,” and that other municipalities are seeing similar cases. He also believes that if gasoline prices continue to rise this could become a larger issue. In the United States, there is a correlation between rising fuel prices and gasoline theft. As gas prices rise, Vancouverites can expect more gasoline theft. In 2014, gas price projections are not expecting an immediate rise, but the current high prices are expected to continue. In the long-term, Vancouverites in particular can expect an increase in fuel prices. Oil prices are determined by a variety of factors, one of which is supply and demand. Theoretically, as demand increases, prices increase as well, but at the same time provide incentives for more increased production and more companies to get in on a valuable market. However, according to economist Jeff Rubin, the demand for oil is increasing significantly but the supply is also slightly decreasing. Rubin argues that it is not that the world is running out of oil. There is lots of it. However, many of newly discovered oil resources and what he called “unconventional sources” like the Canadian oil sands, deep offshore rigs, arctic exploration, and oil shales are more expensive oil extraction. Combined with an increase in demand, this will definitely result in higher global prices. Economist Robyn Allen also argues that if the controversial Northern Gateway and Kinder Morgan pipelines are built that, while there will be some economic advantages, it is often overlooked
that opening up Canadian oil markets to Asian markets will drive up the domestic price of oil by an estimated $8 per barrel. Combine that with an increase in the B.C. Carbon Tax which remains frozen for now but could easily rise in the future and the price for gas in Vancouver will continue to increase. While the future could see an increase in black market gasoline activity, the current black market is already difficult to contain. The Vancouver Police Department is working with and training gas station employees to recognize and report suspicious activities. They are also asking for citizens to take note of people around them using more than one credit card or smelling an unusual amount of gasoline fumes coming from vans. Oil is a remarkable product; it lubricates and energizes the city of Vancouver. But reducing the city’s demand for oil will theoretically drive down the price and might be the best way to shrink the black market. Lower energy costs also benefit businesses, individuals, and society as a whole. One of the best ways to do this is through energy efficiency or through a bike ride, perhaps.
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Retrofitting the vans is the easy part, but stealing credit card data is more difficult. However, rising commodity prices in general, coupled with a surge of technological innovation and know-how, is enabling Internet hackers to attack with unprecedented precision and scale. Roughly one month ago, in the midst of what can already be described as North American consumer holiday chaos, one of America’s largest retailers, Target, fell victim to a security breach in which a believed 40 million customers had credit card data stolen. Just a few years earlier, retailers T.J. Maxx and Marshalls had a security breach that saw 94 million people affected. Credit card data can also be obtained through the use of devices called “skimmers” that can be unknowingly installed on any credit card readers. The skimmers can also be used manually by any employees taking payment with one quick, often undetectable swipe of a skimming device in their pockets/aprons. Montague explains that once the data is obtained it can be uploaded on “any card that has a magnetic stripe and can store data.” If the pirates are careful and smart then it will remain very difficult to detect explains Montague. On the outside, the vans do not look any different from regular cube vans. Gas thieves simply need to make a single, average transaction of roughly $100 and move on to the next gas station making another transaction with a different card. After 10 stations, the van is full and loaded with 1,000 litres of free gas.
The Market Going Forward
Hacking for Credit Card Data
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Groups of individuals are retrofitting cube vans to be able to store up to 1000 litres of gasoline. With the use of stolen credit card data, these petroleum pirates purchase large amounts of gas and sell it just below the market price. It results in thousands of cases of credit card theft as well as unsafe cube vans that are like large gasoline-filled balloons which, in the case of an accident, will pose serious threats to the public. The gains are enormous and profit margins for those involved will continue to rise as the operations will only grow larger. “There is money to be made, and the whole point of being a crook, to make money,” says Constable Brian Montague of the Vancouver Police Department. There is money to be made indeed with the stolen credit card data. While profit margins are close to 100 per cent, Montague estimates that each van load is making up to $600. On Oct. 22, 22-year-old Lucas Cheng was arrested outside a Petro-Canada in South Vancouver. Cheng was caught because he carried out multiple transactions at the same station. The police were called and as suspected, found that his van was retrofitted to fit close to 1,000 litres of gasoline. The growing number of vans carrying large amounts of gasoline, running around the city like a set of brittle bombs ready to be ignited, is a problematic safety issue. Gasoline fumes are difficult to contain in retrofitted vans and just weeks before the Cheng arrest, a cube van randomly ignited into flames while driving down the street just blocks from the site where Cheng was arrested. The drivers managed to escape, and later that day, two badly injured men checked into the hospital. Police suspected they were directly connected to the burning van. Remains from the van indicate it was most likely being used for fuel-theft. While October saw the most activity from the petroleum pirates that Montague has seen during his tenure, since the Cheng arrest, nothing else has been reported. Montague does not believe that anything has stopped, but that Cheng’s arrest served as a valuable warning for other crooks who, if operating with some common sense, are nearly impossible to detect.
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...the evolution of journalism #birdstheword #papercuts #6tweetunder #newspapersnomore
× Sydney Parent
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47 issue N o . 14
× Staff Writer
It could be challenging to find a journalist who will sound optimistic about the fate of newspapers. In this day and age, there are plenty of factors that are proving to be very challenging for newspapers to overcome – to the point that the major publishers are assimilating to new developments and ever changing demands. There are many elements that stand in the way of the classic, traditional, and most natural way of journalism – the newspaper. There are advocates of movement to more environmentally-friendly ways of delivering the news, and those would require a mass reduction in paper production. There is clear evidence in a change of lifestyle; a clear generational divide and people may now look at newspapers as out-dated, or worse, dead. Finally, there is the undoubtedly rapid and unstoppable rise of technology. If the zeitgeist of the current generation were to be turned into a single item, it would be, without a doubt, a smartphone. Android and iOS capabilities have been extremely all encompassing to the point that its impact on journalism is changing the way newsrooms operate. Nowadays, anyone with an iPhone or a Galaxy can report breaking news. It sounds grim, saddening, and pessimistic to proclaim the newspaper industry to be on life support. This, however, doesn’t mean the death of journalism. Rather, rising through the dusts like a phoenix are new ways of delivering the news.
The demise of the newspaper industry will lead to a set of new platforms that journalists – and non journalists – can and will use because regardless of what media outlet, one way or another, people will want to get their news stories and all sorts of content that journalists have always provided.
Straight into the Graveyard “The Newspaper is dying,” or “the Newspaper is dead,” are words that have become all-too-familiar to anyone who has even the slightest awareness of any sort of news or media. In the Collection of Predictions for Journalism 2014 by Harvard University’s Nieman Journalism Lab, not a single journalist predicted a renaissance of the newspaper. Instead, numerous predictions were centred on the importance of technology, such as the rising popularity of code and programming knowledge, the increasing significance of Twitter, and other avant-garde developments in journalism. Scott Klein, senior editor of news applications at ProPublica wrote in his prediction that, “Every skill you don’t have, a whole class of stories [is] out of your reach. And data stories are usually the ones that are hiding in plain sight.” Klein goes on to discuss the advantages of people who understand the complexities of computer science, they’re faster, and they’re well equipped. Furthermore, Klein took it a step further – even non-journalists who
happen to know some programs can now break the news. “But somewhere out there is a recent jschool grad who’s just started covering your beat. She’s raw, and she has no rolodex. When she talks to sources, her voice shakes and she doesn’t ask all the questions she should,” Klein wrote. “But she studied Python and statistics, and she can use OpenRefine and PostgreSQL, so she’s faster than you. And she’s about to publish something you thought nobody but you knew about.”
A Wonderful Future Despite the gloomy prospects of the newspaper industry, there are plenty of things to look forward to when it comes to journalism. One of the things that will never change is the desire for information. In fact, it can be argued that the desire to get news as soon as possible is currently at its peak, considering the amount of traffic Twitter generates when a major news story breaks. There are many new developments that are not exclusive to the major players in the news industry. University newspapers are now encouraged to dramatically attempt to brand themselves as more than just a newspaper. It’s now becoming apparent that even university-based, student-led newspapers should be taking the time to develop their platforms in multimedia, mobile, and social media. There are new media outlets that publications are hopping on, and some of them are generating strong interest.
Virtual Paper One of the notable formats in new media journalism is through an ongoing research by Virtual Paper. Virtual Paper, in partnership with a minimum of 10 university newspapers is studying the way smart ad placement can benefit online publications. “What we do is e-Edition, we are specialists in digital publications for newspapers,” says Mélanie Boudreau, marketing and accounting manager for Virtual Paper. Founded in 2005 in Montreal, Virtual Paper allows publications to digitalize their work, while maintaining the feel of a newspaper. Through e-Edition, a digital edition of a printed book, newspaper or journal, which can be read on a computer or mobile device. “An e-Edition, is basically a replica of the print. What we do is we take the PDF of the paper and our engine converts it into a rich, digital publication.” What separates e-Edition from other programs such as Issuu is the more diverse and extensive capabilities it allows the publishers. “Our product is way more than just a flip page. Our clients have access to the management platform, where they can do everything by themselves, they can customize by adding their logo, a loader or a toolbar,” explains Boudreau. E-Edition also allows its users to add content, customize the background, and pop-up any videos they wish to present.
Their approach is based on four pillars: user experience, distribution, measurement, and monetization. User Experience allows publications to enhance their audience engagement through the interactive e-Edition. Distribution maximizes the scope of the publication’s reach by allowing viewing in many platforms of technology. For example, Virtual Paper’s Facebook capacity allows people to share the newspaper, magazine or journal on their Facebook timelines, without any need of leaving the social networking site. Measurement gives publishers the ability to monitor traffic, which in turn provides data regarding readership. Finally, Virtual Paper includes a monetization approach. Where publishers can “turn their content into revenue into ad placement.” Virtual Paper’s research project has resulted in data that reveals that their ad placement does not induce a negative experience for readers, through the ability to measure average page views, and length of visit, Virtual Paper concluded that the way the ads are set up does not create an overmarketed feeling for the readers. “We have approximately 350 clients all over the world, we have newspapers, magazines, catalogues, and directories,” begins Boudreau. “We have 100,000 active publications online everyday,” she adds. Virtual Paper also operates with a unique perspective. One of the subtle goals the company has is to at least resuscitate newspapers. Granted, the demand for the digital and less use of paper might be too great to overcome, but Virtual Paper’s feature that allows for maintaining the newspaper feel creates new possibilities for the readers. “The idea was to maintain the traditional flipbook format because it gives the people the classic feeling of newspapers,” says Ayelet Germanski, project and account manager at Virtual Paper. “We definitely want to think that Virtual Paper is an element that will help the revival of newspapers,” notes Germanski. “First of all, we do not believe that the newspaper is going to die. It’s the way the paper
is managed, a lot of the participants that we see have a very old view of how newspapers should be ran, but because the world is changing, people will still need the information – but possibly in a different way.” “I think nowadays with the computer, and especially now that everybody has a smartphone, and even a tablet, I think that this is a way to save or revitalize the industry,” says Boudreau. “The content will always be relevant and important to the population, the goal is to shake up the industry and change the format of presenting the content, either by Twitter, or a website or the digital publication itself,” she adds. Virtual Paper’s future plans include further integration and personalizing of content. “We really want to go dynamic and behavioural, what we plan to do is be able to push readers custom content that accommodate their reading habits, as well as a more integration with the Twitter feed,” explains Boudreau.
The Power of Twitter Matt Frehner, mobile editor for the Globe and Mail, is one of the leading forces in advocating newsrooms to become more mobile-friendly, as he says, “Social is mobile, mobile is social.” As important as the roles of content and technology plays, there is still a third major factor that holds significance in the future of media: the audience. Ed O’Keefe, Editor-in-Chief of NowThis News wrote in his Prediction for Journalism 2014 in the Nieman Journalism Lab that, “Instagram, Facebook, Vine, Twitter, and Snapchat (srsly) are news mediums — because that’s where the audience is.” The rise of mobile-friendly journalism can be attributed to a smartphone’s ability to push information right to the readers – in real time. CBC and the Globe and Mail’s iOS apps both exemplify such capabilities. Journalism’s modernization can also be attributed to the features a smartphone can do. One of Frehner’s biggest points about an iPhone is its ability to record, shoot a video, take a photo, write an
article and even publish straight from the mobile device – no longer do journalists need an entire equipment kit to cover an article. Yet, another tech figure plays an important role in the ongoing evolution of journalism: Twitter. Maria Bustillos from the Nieman Journalism Lab and the New Yorker described the popular social media giant as “a combination newsroom, water cooler, stock ticker, and gossip mill, and still utterly addictive to journalists.” Twitter allows journalists to tweet their breaking news headlines and follow it with a link to the story, should the reader want to. Twitter also allows both readers and journalists to track certain news topics that have caught their attention through the use of hashtags. For example the biggest news story in the past year for the Globe and Mail was the Rob Ford scandal, which trended with a #robford or a #ford. “Twitter as a promotion for journalism as a way for communicating with readers is one of the most important, if not the most important digital tools,” begins Frehner. “We’re training a lot more on how to use Twitter and how to use it smartly, we’re using it to promote our content in new different ways and we find that the audience in Twitter is very engaged,” he adds. Live-Tweeting is one of journalists’ biggest uses of Twitter, reporters are now capable of integrating their readers into a story, or event that they’re covering as it allows real time coverage. “It’s reinforcing and making sure that our brand and our content is most relevant as possible,” says Frehner.
disappear, but never will the content because the public will always want the news,” agrees Boudreau. Even the rise of Twitter as a journalistic tool is not necessarily affecting content. Granted, newsrooms are now tweeting their headlines out, but these headlines are accompanied by a link to the actual story. Even the polar opposite of tweets are also on the rise. The two most-read articles by the Globe and Mail in 2013 were both in long form: “Globe Investigation: The Ford family’s history with drug dealing” and “How BlackBerry blew it: The inside story.” Popular sports blogging community SB Nation also released several major stories in long form, and even ranked their 10 favourites. Ultimately, in whatever platform journalists choose to release their work through, and in whatever fashion readers choose to read them, the one aspect that isn’t changing is the desire for the information. Journalism is undoubtedly reaching new grounds in terms of production. Cameras, recorders, and notebooks are now all amalgamated in one smartphone. News websites are now built to be mobile-friendly, and to some, even mobilefirst. Live-Tweeting in itself, has become one of the most effective ways for journalists to push information to the public in real-time. Yet despite all of that, the finished product that readers fundamentally want is the content.
Quality Over Quantity Despite all the technological developments that are happening, and despite technology’s increasingly significant role in journalism, one aspect that won’t be changing anytime soon is content. “No matter what, people will still look for information,” remarks Germanski. “The paper might
"Social is mobile, mobile is social."
ON the Cover
47 issue N o . 14
Syd, child of two, mother of none - is an illustration student in Capilano's IDEA Program. When she is not working, she enjoys collecting crumbs in her hair and debating whether or not it is worth it to shower. Danger is her middle name.
the capilano courier
arts Shorts j. cole PNE FORUM, JAN. 14 Carlo Javier × Staff Writer Cole world, Cole life, Cole blooded. Little did anyone know, rapper-producer J.Cole also has a talent as a comedian. Throughout his electric setlist in smoke-filled PNE Forum, Cole demonstrated his little-known wit, from bantering around with the crowd or having some good-natured trash talking with one of his opening acts, Bas. Cole opened his set with “Trouble" from his latest album, Born Sinner. Backed by a live band and a DJ, Cole showed that his intricately produced hip-hop beats are entirely replicable in a live environment. The show started off with the crowd on its feet as Cole performed hits from his adored debut album, Cole World: A Sideline Story. The opening riff of the Missy Elliot-assisted “Nobody’s Perfect” immediately drew loud cheers from the predominantly smoker audience, and the mega-popular “Work Out” was expectedly one of the best-received songs of the night. One of the biggest highlights of the night was, however, from one of his lesser talked
ART SHORTS EDITOR ×
about songs, “She Knows”. The Amber Coffman – of Dirty Projectors fame – assisted song proved to have a much more eclectic sound when played live. At one point, Cole tried to find fans in the crowd who had been with him since his mixtape days, playing a very different, and rather intimate rendition of “Lights Please”, the song that famously got him signed onto Jay Z’s Roc Nation. Cole impressed the crowd with a never before heard mix, by interplaying “Lights Please” with “Hurt” by The Manhattans. To end, Cole gave the crowd the chance to pick which song they would like to hear, with the best cheers going to the heartfelt “Lost Ones” and the meaningful, though rather average “Let Nas Down”. Ultimately, he ended playing both songs and seemingly ended his show with “Can’t Get Enough”. It’s of note that J.Cole took the time not only to acknowledge the band, but also gave each member the time to perform a solo. For his encore, Cole performed the two biggest hits from his latest album, “Crooked Smile” and “Power Trip”. Vancouver’s hip-hop acumen once again impressed with J.Cole’s concert, however, the utterly terrible insulation in the Forum is a topic to be addressed. As during the entire duration of the concert, the place was firing out lung cancer patients left and right.
CHINA CLOUD, JAN. 7 Paisley Conrad
the capilano courier
47 issue N o . 14
Set the scene: It's a Tuesday night, in a small, crowded theatre in an upstairs artistic haven in the depths of Chinatown. The drinks are being served in mason jars, and candles light the room. This is the three-year anniversary of popular improv show, 10speed, hosted by Tom Hill and Devin Mackenzie of Hip.Bang! The show features 10-minute sets from Vancouver's best improvisers. If the performers go over their time limit, the hosts have permission to punish or distract them. The night’s openers were four cast members of Instant Theatre, who played a game of “More -!” with the audience. Audience members were invited to lead the scene, by shouting out to the players what they wanted to see more of. Stand out suggestions include “more sexy!”, “more Cockney!” and “more HBO!” Next up were Tegan and Kyle, whose set was stocked with painful one-liners and stock characters. The audience was relieved when Hip.Bang! came onstage to shush the actors. Matterhorn was next, a trio of seasoned stand-up comedians known for their bizarre characters. Joining them was Chris Wilson, member of sketch comedy group Peter 'N Chris. Their distraction included a
toy machine gun, with a dildo complete with a ball sack attached to the end. Grooveback, powerhouse duo, used an interesting terminology for genitalia, “meat curtains” as their chosen ask-for, which they took and ran with. Their scene flew by and the audience was surprised after Hip.Bang! entered the stage at 10 minutes to punish them with some casual teeth brushing. That seemed fairly tame for a punishment, until Tom and Devin came back with two glasses of orange juice and forced them to drink. The entire audience winced. The hosts then took the stage, comedy veteran Mark Little joining them, bringing their head-count up to three. Nicole Passmore, known for her erratic antics onstage, served as a guest distracter for this set, in which she brought out a small cake, bearing three candles in honour of the show’s anniversary. After making the boys blow out the candles, she proceeded to cake one of them in the face. Closing out the show were Vancouver comedy giants, The Sunday Service. With the inspiration of the word “confrontation”, their punishment was perfectly tailored for their set. Chris Wilson came running onstage, completely naked aside from a leather pistol holster and a cowboy hat, armed with two plastic guns. After three years of insane distractions and crazy punishments, this was the perfect anniversary gift for Hip.Bang!
medicine FIREHALL ARTS CENTRE, JAN. 15 Leah Scheitel × Editor - in - Chief For 85 minutes, TJ Dawe spoke to the audience about his demons. Standing nearly in one spot, he reminisced about his strict Christian upbringing, the stupidity of the names of the months, and his affinity for one-man plays and fringe festivals. Wearing a simple black shirt and pants, and accompanied only by a little light direction, it was a minimalist show to the core, yet the entire audience was captivated, wanting to hear exactly what he was going to say next. For the first half of the show, Dawe entertained the audience with tales of his time in university, discovering drugs for the first time, and the beauty of fringe festivals. Dawe has been able to make his career in acting by writing and performing one-man autobiographical plays, and it’s clear why: he’s good at it. Medicine pivoted when he began speaking about reading Dr. Gabor Mate’s books about addiction. Dawe read all four of Dr. Maté’s book multiple times, and after reaching out to Dr. Maté to invite him
to one of his shows, the two began talking more about Dawe’s personal issues. This eventually leads to a retreat, where Dr. Maté and a team of shamans help people through deep, embedded issues, and then offer them medicine – or ayahuasca, which is a combination of plants from South America. Only when cooked properly for around eight hours does the concoction become psychedelic. It’s a ceremonial experience, and while everyone can have a very different and personal experience, Dawe unabashedly told the audience about his. To explain more would be a disservice to the play, but seeing it first hand from Dawe by watching his show is highly recommended. After the performance, Dawe invited Dr. Maté to the stage for a Q&A period with the audience. People asked about the specifics of the drug and where it’s from and about Dawe’s relationship with his parents. Both were completely honest and open, which added to the integrity of the show. It was inspiring to see someone on stage hide behind nothing – no props, masks, or costumes – and divulge details about a intense and personal experience.
Grandmaster Flash FORTUNE, JAN. 15 Faye Alexander × Opinions Editor On Wednesday night, Fortune Sound Club hosted their KnowShow edition of hip-hop karaoke with a very special guest. The club was packed all the way to the back with an assortment of young hipsters in fitted toques sporting oversized nonprescription glasses, blended with the genuine old-schoolers in angry looking leather jackets and matching leathery faces. Any of those who enjoy the hobby of “people watching” were in all out heaven with the eclectic mix of young blood and those old enough to have been a fan from the dawn of the genre. And who knew that hiphop had, in fact, gotten so hip? The hip-hop karaoke portion of the event was an all-out brawl of rhyme spits and trash talk. The KnowShow edition boasted some of the best in Vancouver who would later get to brag they shared the same stage with hip-hop’s own pioneer. The calibre of the karaoke performances would have sent anyone with a “joking” request running for the washroom. But despite the enthusiasm of the MC and the skill of
those who busted lines on stage, the crowd was restless. Where the hell was Grandmaster Flash? The stage went dim as Seko continued to spin, and the turntables made their way out. Girls were grinding hard against the monitors when the Grandmaster walked out in the dark to check on the equipment, only to leave shortly thereafter. A few more dark appearances later and countless sound checks and adjustments - it was 12:45a.m. and the lights finally went up. Grandmaster Flash took to the turntables demonstrating the skills 30 plus years in the business have left him with, creating a ‘70s inspired funk dance floor as he scratched away with effortless swag. The songs would break for his repeated demand “Get your hands up!” A young man in the front was wildly waving about his vinyl along with a sharpie with a look of sheer desperation on his face, while Grandmaster Flash took another break from the performance due to the sound system being “all fucked up.” He walked about the edge of the stage looking out over the sea of the young and hip and when he spotted the vinyl and sharpie being wailed about, he simply remarked, “I’m working man, what the fuck do you think you’re doing?”
cap calendar Monday 20
Hot Chocolate Festival
Fork Over Knives
Measure for Measure
A Brimful of Asha
Various coffee shops and chocolatiers 11 am onward $4+
West Vancouver Memorial Library 6 pm $5
Pacific Theatre 8 pm $31.50
Arts Club Revue Theatre 7:30 pm $35
Trip around the city’s coffee shops and chocolatiers, tasting their choco-experiments during Vancouver’s fourth annual Hot Chocolate festival. Bella Gelateria’s “Red Hot Chili Pepper”, a hot chocolate flavoured with cinnamon and cayenne, and served with Erin Ireland's "To Die For" banana bread, is just one of over 60 samples the city has to offer.
Whole Foods Market in West Vancouver is offering a movie screening of “Forks Over Knives”, a documentary that examines whether or not many of our epidemic health-related problems could be solved by adopting an anti-processed, animalproduct-free diet. Fresh snacks and discussion to follow.
Move over Bard on the Beach, the Pacific Theatre is presenting Shakespeare in Vancouver – but not at much cheaper than the annual Vanier Park’s summer-long festival. Measure for Measure is the story of Vienna's ruthless morality laws being revived by temporary ruler Angelo, and a young nun is left with an impossible choice: her soul for her brother's life.
As part of Vancouver’s PuSh Festival, the Revue Theatre presents A Brimful of Asha, a story about a mother who is determined to see her son, Ravi, married-even if she has to arrange it-and is not shy about saying why. In this unusual and unusually funny show, mother and son share the stage and tell their entertaining true story of generational and cultural clash.
Food-tography: The Tour
The Evil Bastard Karaoke Experience
Food for Thought
The Orpheum 8 pm $31.50+
Cadeaux Bakery 3:30 pm $72
Funky Winkerbeans 9 pm $-free
Urban Thai Bistro 7:30 pm $32.25
Alt-country’s newest superstar, Jake Bugg, hits the Orpheum Theatre after playing Vancouver’s biggest little venue, the Biltmore Cabaret, just months earlier. Go for a toe-tappin, foot-stompin good time – and see what the Peak FM and CBC radio 2 are all atwitter for.
Are you that person; the one that Instagrams all of your food pictures, whether it’s a gourmet neopolitan pizza or your deceivingly healthy-looking breakfast of yogurt and berries? If so, here’s your chance to hone that skill. Meeting at Cadeaux Bakery, bring your pro-sumer camera for a trip around Vancouver’s finest eateries and learn to really filter those fine pieces of fried fish.
It’s no secret that the staffers at the Cap Courier love us some good karaoke, so lucky for us the DTES’s diviest dive bar offers free karaoke at this weekly event. Slam back some ultra-cheap shots of whiskey and be prepared to growl your little heart out. You might even spot a Cap Courier superstar. Hint: the more whiskey you drink, the better we sound.
Urban Thai Bistro hosts Food for Thought as part of Dine Out Vancouver. Experience an exciting evening at this event by tasting some special Thai tapas and having a look at some of the latest fashion on display, while the very talented musical artists from Studio Cloud 30 perform for your viewing and listening pleasure.
Board of Directors Meeting
Vancouver International Boat Show
TJ Dawe's Medicine
Flight of the Dragon
CSU Maple Lounge 11:30 am $ - free
BC Place Marina 11 am to 9 pm $ - free
Firehall Arts Centre 8 pm $25
FlyOver Canada 10 am to 9 pm $19.95
Participate in your school democracy by attending this CSU Board of Directors meeting, and find out what the CSU is doing with your student funds, because hey, you’re paying a lot to be here. At least you’re your student loans are – which, technically, you won’t have to pay for a while.
Vancouver’s 51st annual boat show sails into the harbour, with the province's largest display of boats, engines, electronics, marine gifts and accessories. Only a short ride away from the floating boat show venue at Granville Island - where visitors can enjoy free boat rides, climb aboard the largest yachts featured at the show. Free shuttle buses and free water ferries run continuously between the two venues.
You’ve all had a friend who traveled to South America and regaled you with their spiritual experience with jungle psychotrope, ayahuasca. Fringe Festival legend TJ Dawe shares his funny, at times heartbreaking and enlightening experience with Gabor Maté, the Amazonian psychotropic plant medicine ayahuasca, group therapy and his path to introspection.
FlyOver Canada does it again, this time in the theme of the Chinese New Year. Follow a mythical dragon as you soar over some of China’s most spectacular landscapes and scenery during Flight of the Dragon. Then, a thrilling flight ride that takes you from east to west across Canada with special effects including wind, scents and mist.
CBC Toque Sessions Kick-Off
CBC Studio One (700 Hamilton Street) 7:30 pm $ - free
Vancouver FanClub 6 pm $30.50
The Rio Theatre 7 pm, 9:30 pm $8
SFU Harbour Centre All Day $ - free
CBC Vancouver’s Toque Sessions free concert series runs each Thursday and Friday beginning at 7:30pm in Studio One at the CBC Broadcast Centre. This kick-off show includes Hayley and Jess Moskaluke. Reservations are not available so be sure to secure your place in the rush line by 6:30 p.m. each show day.
The Vancouver Friends for Life Society and Vancouver FanClub partner to present this live twist on a cult classic. Enjoy a three-course dinner along with a stellar cabaret show starring celebrity Vancouver Drag Queens Joan-E, Carlotta Gurl, and Coco. This high heeled evening of Drag Queen glamour is sure to delight.
The Rio Theatre screens Her, about a lonely writer who develops an unlikely relationship with his newly purchased operating system that's designed to meet his every need. Starring Joaquin Phoenix, Amy Adams, and Scarlett Johansson. All-star cast in an indie-flick? Never a bad idea.
Reconciling Injustices in a Pluralistic Canada is a FREE full-day dialogue. The event will draw upon the knowledge and experiences of six affected communities to identify shared principles and approaches that can support the reconciliation of injustices in Canadian society.
The Motorcycle Show
Canada's Top Ten
Tucked & Plucked
Shark Club 8:30 pm $10
Abbotsford Tradex 12 pm onwards $14
The Cinematheque 6:30 pm $11
Performance Works 8 pm $25
In case you don’t hear enough sub-par renditions of other people’s songs, tribute bands GUNZ N’ FN’ ROSEZ, Crazy Diamonds, Sister Sabbath, and HIP TOO rock out to all your favourite hardrockin karaoke gems. I don’t know about you, but I love me a good cover song.
If for no other reason than you really liked The Motorcycle Diaries, you’re going to want to spend a day among hog-lovin’, rock’n’roll bearded old men and crotch-rocket racers. You might even find a pretty good deal on a hog yourself, if not, maybe at least the desire to get a skull and crossbones tattoo.
The Cinematheque kicks off its annual review of Canada’s top 10 films of 2013. Tonight, they screen Watermark, which explores the massive impact that human intervention has had on the world’s water supply with images of astonishing (and sometimes terrifying) beauty.
Ever wondered where drag queens came from? Tucked and Plucked unearths the history of the drag movement in Vancouver. Following the rise of drag culture alongside-and often directly impacting-the queer rights movement, this glamorous and outrageous talk show explores the effect these audacious individuals have had on social and political change.
Trapped in the Closet
Winter Farmer's Market
The Studio East Bazaar
The Rio Theatre 10:30 pm $10/$12
PNE forum building 10 am to 4 pm $12 to $15
Nat Bailey Stadium 10 am to 2 pm $ - free
Studio East (1480 Frances Street) 10 am to 5 pm $ - free
North America’s first-ever hip-hopera, penned and produced by North America’s most unpunished lover of minors, R. Kelly, screens at the Rio Theatre while audience members are encouraged to sing along with the “Real Talk” star. We love R. Kellz as much as the last girl, but he most definitely cannot stick his key in my ignition.
Are you sick of hearing your friends oh-so-trendily exclaim that they can’t eat pizza with you because they have a gluten allergy? Have you been so frustrated that you’ve thrown in the towel and kicked carbs to the curb along with them? Good. Here’s a trendy food expo for you and your gluten-free friends!
Bring your reusable, cloth grocery bag, an appetite for sampling vegan foods, and a bit of cash to Nat Bailey Stadium’s Winter Farmer’s Market. Though those heirloom tomatoes might be out-of-season, here you can find a plethora of beets, rainbow chard, and free-range poultry. Viva hipsterdom!
Need to make a bit of extra money after the holiday season, and have some cool items you know people will love? Look no further than the Studio East Bazaar! Whether you have craft ware or clothes, records or retro, the bazaar is open to all
ICONS Vintage Market
Street Food City
Blumin Pop Up Shop
Sunday Blues Revue
The Biltmore Cabaret 11 am to 5 pm $5
750 Hornby Street 11 am to 3 pm $ - free
434 Columbia Street 10 am to 11 pm $ - free
The Columbia (New Westminster) 5 pm to 9 pm $ - free
Brought to you by the ladies of Eastside Flea, ICONS is a brand new market put on at the legendary red-velvet draped Biltmore Cabaret. A labyrinth of counterculture, focusing on vintage clothing vendors, with some local artisans & cool flea market collectors thrown into the mix.
Street Food City gives Vancouverites the opportunity to sample some of Vancouver’s finest food carts all in one convenient location. Snack your way through Rain City with a sampling of a little Indian food, some risotto balls, and maybe even a Japanese-themed hot dog. Good thing those yoga pants stretch!
Blumin Pop Up Shop, your co-working space for writers, presents workshops, readings, parties and more. From 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., Carol Shillibeer does drop in mini tarot readings and dream interpretation sessions by donation. Poetry classes, readings and collaborations will run all day.
Enjoy the New Orleans style venue, newlyrenovated, for some blues by some of the finest musicians in this vintage show lounge every Sunday night for Sunday Blues Revue—which is odd, considering this old playhouse is primarily used for stand-up comedy and overpriced drinks.
47 issue N o . 14
the capilano courier
× LEAH SCHEITEL
for the sake of argument THE TRUE MEANING OF YOGA
Tomas Borsa × Columnist
the capilano courier
47 issue N o . 14
Whether we call them “sacred”, “taboo”, or simply “off-limits”, some things in life are guarded, and their place of privilege in the collective consciousness is all but taken for granted. They’ve had their time in the sun – it’s time to hold them to the flame, and this is just what Tomas Borsa will do – argue against things that typically wouldn’t be argued against. And argue back, simply for the fun of it.
Like millions of other westerners, I consider yoga an integral part of my life. I love the clarity that it brings to my thoughts; I love the feeling of calm that washes over after a deep inhale. But for the next 800 words, let’s put all that aside. Yoga has existed in one way or another for a long, long time. Indeed, to refer to it by a single moniker is to ignore the fact that there has never been agreement as to its best practice, aims, or underlying philosophy. In any case, at some point in the early 20th century, a small number of determined gurus decided to introduce the concept of yoga to the Western world. Some parts stuck, most parts didn’t. Today, what most Westerners colloquially refer to as “yoga” is in fact hatha yoga, understood primarily as a form of physical exercise. Our modern understanding of yoga, in other words, differs greatly from its original intent, and we are left with little more than a haphazard reinterpretation of its core values. But hey, things change – so why should that matter? First, because yoga, as it is typically practiced in North America, finds itself increasingly distant from the principles of asceticism in which it finds its roots. In the yoga Sutras of Patanjali – considered the single most important text in yoga’s development and popularization – the author writes, “Yoga is the cessation of the fluctuations of the mind.” In other words, the intent was to achieve a
× Ksenia Kozhevnikova
sense of deep mental calm, and to put aside mundane distractions. Today, many classes have more in common with Tae-bo than they do Jainism, and the practice has become a trendy, competition-oriented diversion for the privileged castes. At the core of this vain devolution is a crisis of identity. On the one hand, yoga’s success in the West has been due to its re-packaging to suit Western tastes as an alternative form of exercise. But it cannot afford to be seen as being on the same level as water aerobics, Pilates, or a particularly half-assed bout of P90X. Instead, Western yoga must perpetually aspire – superficially, at least – to maintain itself as a comprehensive system for improving mental and spiritual well-being. It must lower itself to a marketable standard while simultaneously elevating itself above its competitors. And so we are left with a simplified version of yoga that is little more than an elitist social club. At a typical downtown studio, you’ll find glitzy private changing rooms with make-up stations, stainless steel fixtures, and towel service. An annual membership will cost between $500 and $4,000 (depending on how bespoke you’d like your experience of transcendence), and no, that does not include the cost of nirvana. Of course, all of these fees are dwarfed by the increasing popularity of “yoga retreats”, where affluent hedonists may band together and delight in the great foreign-ness of
sitting cross-legged in a tropical, far-away place. Beyond the exorbitant studio costs, it is an unfortunate reality that yoga increasingly celebrates the cult of the body beautiful. Whether shouted through a microphone or merely implied through gesture and tone, there would appear to be no greater proof of one’s commitment to yoga than a low body mass index. Consider that Lululemon (chief beneficiary of the commercialization of yoga) only offers women’s clothing up to a size 12; what message could this possibly be sending apart from “you can’t sit with us”? Call me over-sensitive, but I’m weary of anyone who can claim that their practice remains remotely inward while staring at their reflection in a room of seven-foot tall mirrors. Esotericism has given way to aestheticism. And lastly, there is a crucial difference between cultural appreciation and cultural appropriation, and neither naiveté or well-meaning are enough to forgive the latter. Let’s think about the usage of Sanskrit in many yoga classes; sure, it is the traditional language of the Vedic system, but then, Latin is the traditional language of the Catholic Church. Both are dead languages used for purely ceremonial purposes. Are you really qualified to market yourself as a fluent speaker of Sanskrit after a nine-week teacher’s certificate program? Does reciting a list of razzle-dazzle terms elevate you to a higher plane? Possibly – but perhaps they merely
serve as markers of someone who has confused exoticism with authenticity. And so, the next time you find yourself awkwardly swaying in Utkatasana, ask yourself: “Am I paying tribute to the principles of an ancient practice, or am I slowly eroding its foundations?” In any case, having shelled out the last of your rent money on drop-in fees, you’ll be free to contemplate the Ayurvedic properties of ramen noodles. Namaste.
girls on top COMEDIC FEMINISM Amy Poulston × Columnist
A few things about Amy Poulston: she adores Harry Potter, can finish a crossword like a boss, and has a twin brother. While studying Art History and English at UBC, she also is an open-and-out feminist, and will argue her points in an articulate manner. Her column will explore feminist issues in today’s pop culture. The Golden Globes kicked off the awards season with the amazing and hilarious Tina Fey and Amy Poehler as hosts. These two wonderful women, SNL alums as well as vocal feminists, are part of a trend in recent years of women taking the reins from men as hosts for award shows. After Ricky Gervais’ cringe-inducing 2012 stint at the Golden Globes, Fey and Poehler were a welcome change in 2013 and were so well received that they were invited back this year to once again give a great show and cause the highest ratings for the Golden Globes in 10 years. Ellen DeGeneres continues this trend by hosting the Academy Awards on March 2, after both Seth MacFarlane and Billy Crystal were criticized for their poor performances in the past two years – Crystal for being boring and MacFarlane for being sexist. As a feminist and
vocal advocate for equal rights – seriously watch her talk about Bic pens for women – Ellen DeGeneres will join Tina Fey and Amy Poehler in showing the world, and roughly 80 million viewers, that not only can women be funny, they can help spread a feminist viewpoint. On Jan. 12, Fey and Poelher’s opening monologue contained numerous jokes that can be seen as feminist. Examples of these include their pride in women’s sexuality when Poehler remarked, “Master’s of Sex is the degree I got from Boston College.” Fey’s jab at Matthew Mcconaughey’s heavily publicized weight loss of 45 pounds for Dallas Buyers Club that was “what actresses call ‘being in a movie,’” and a look at Hollywood’s obsession with youth when Fey pointed out that roles for mature actresses other than Meryl Streep are rare. These may seem like witty lighthearted quips but they act as so much more by helping to shed some light on the inequality that still plagues our society. I would like to think I’ve always been a feminist but that isn’t true. At first, I was too young to know what feminism was, never mind the differences in anatomy. Then, after that, came the clusterfuck that is puberty. I won’t bore you with endless excerpts from my awkward teen years, but I like to think that after the needless yearning to conform that is adolescence diminishes, most rational minds begin to recognize that our society is fairly skewed. That being said, if I had a tuna roll for every time someone asked me why women’s rights are actually an issue, I’d probably be dead from mercury poisoning – or perhaps radiation. For me, it was only after I took my first women’s studies class in post-secondary that I truly began to grasp the scope of just what the heck was going on in our society. I found myself questioning things
a lot more and exclaiming, “What the hell?!” over things I wouldn’t have previously thought twice about. Notable revelations include how women are called sluts while men are praised for being players, how gender roles make it abnormal for women to find “male” activities interesting, and how women are literally told that they cause their own rape. But in all of this negativity, there are still small steps forward to celebrate. In the past few years there has been a rise in “body positive” advertising, a growing awareness of the negative effects Photoshop is having on our body image, and widespread discussion about abortion rights in the United States. Part of the problem is that feminism has a bad reputation which causes women and men who already believe in equality to say, “I’m not a feminist, but…” due to society’s perception of the word. Some celebrities, such as Katy Perry at the 2012 Billboard Women in Music Awards, are actually scared of publicly identifying as feminists since presumably it might damage their image. The misconception is that feminists are anti-men, when in reality they’re just pro-equality, which I think most normal people already agree with. For example, most people would agree that women should be paid the same amount as men for doing the same job, but U.S. senators are still voting down an equal pay bill that asks for equal wages, despite the fact that paying women equally would not only reduce poverty but jump-start their economy. It’s crazy that women are the majority of the population yet it is men that overwhelmingly hold the positions of power and make the decisions for the rest of society. Not to mention that these men are almost all affluent, heterosexual, white males, which closes the spectrum of bias even more. I believe that if we support equality for women, then we are moving one step closer to equality for every-
one in our society, whether they are different races, sexual or gender identities, disabilities, and so on. Feminism isn’t about being against anything, but rather starting conversations to spark positive change in the way society views women. The fact that we have funny and strong females like Fey and Poehler, among a plethora of others, is a great start to a conversation that needs to happen.
× Emily McGratten
the big whoopsie A NEW YEAR IN POLITICAL MISTAKES Maple Leaf Mitigators:
Erica Charron × Columnist
Erica Charron likes to tell people when they are being stupid, and so naturally, she wants to tell the government to stop being assholes, and to work for their people. She loves kittens, even though they sometimes make her cry, and the ultimate connoisseur of the documentaries offered on Netflix. For good entertainment, buy her a glass of wine and debate about current affairs. Peek-a-boo-boo?
you’ve randomly picked Lebanon as your new worldly obsession. But before we move forward it is important to learn the lessons of the years past mistakes. Whether they are personal or political, fuck-ups are a natural part of the working world and making amends with these mistakes is the only way we can truly move forward.
47 issue N o . 14
The Vodka Vortex:
Russian President Vladimir Putin passed an antigay bill that bans homosexual men and women and any homosexual activity/propaganda within the country. Offenders face hefty fines and jail time while attitudes of discrimination and hate run high within the country’s social fabric, threatening the safety of LGBT individuals in everyday
Uncle Sam Land:
In an October issue, we talked about the U.S government shut down over indecisive funding methods for the proposed Affordable Care Act — a health-care plan that would expand the accessibility of affordable healthcare to all citizens through consumer protections, regulations, and taxes. Republicans hated the idea and thus everyone decided to throw their hands up in the air and say, “Fuck it,” and go home. Four months later, the Affordable Care Act is still unaffordable as ever but at least the world’s biggest super power went back to work, right?
It is with great sadness that the world waved goodbye to South African Apartheid leader Nelson Mandela, who passed away on Dec. 5. Yet, it is with far more confusion that we watched an unidentified man bypass security at Mandela’s funeral, as well as six national leaders, and impersonated a sign-language interpreter on stage — gesticulating complete gibberish in front of a global audience. It was later revealed that the man suffered a schizophrenic episode and was unaware of his actions. The world was baffled and outraged by this epic fuck-up and brought into question the credibility of international security maintained outside the western world in general.
Yes, another year has come and gone. The holidays are over, the gluttonous festivities subsided, your hot New Year’s cocktail dress is sitting in the laundry, branded with the shameless stain of vomit and very poor decisions, and you have vowed with absolute irritating tenacity to cleanse your body from this January and forward with positive thinking and a new juicer. This month you will change your life! Those resolutions are sticking this time. You will get a second job and be more financially responsible. That old relation-shit that has felt like pure anthrax in your heart for the last 52 weeks and has given you an excuse to try on alcoholism and kleptomania for size – nope! No more! You are a new you. You’ve spread those legs and welcomed all 2014 inches. But most importantly, you will become a guru of current affairs — an activist for women’s rights and child injustices. Obama is suddenly suspicious to you, Harper is on your hit list, and
× Tierney Milne
One of the greatest political atrocities of the year was committed by Syria, when its government used chemical weapons against its own citizens — plunging the nation into a violent civil war that has proliferated past its own borders. Hundreds of thousands of refugees have flooded in Lebanon while others have illegally crossed into Europe seeking asylum from compassionate governments. The Syrian War has further intensified the instability in the Middle East. Also, Western countries flirted with taking military action against Syria because of the threat of chemical warfare. The beauty about a brand new year is the intangible sensation of a new life page being turned. What have we learned from these magnificent worldly flops? Firstly, don’t be such a limp-dick, address your responsibilities, confront your conflicts and don’t go home until they have been resolved. Secondly, don’t steal tax payers’ dollars, or anyone’s money for that matter, to fund your new indoor infinity pool and don’t, under any circumstances, smoke crack in your spare time while talking about eating your wife out on national television. Thirdly, and mostly importantly, learn some compassion and tolerance. So what if certain individuals like it up the butt, or strap-it-on as if they have one – no matter what orientation or chosen vibration, people are people and governments should treat them as such. But that was last year. Get ready for a whole new year of screw ups, scandals, and lies from the governing bodies.
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Meanwhile, to the North, Canada indulged in its own funding scandal when it was uncovered that members of senate (Mike Duffy, Patrick Brazeau, and Pamela Wallin) were claiming tens of thousands of dollars in senate expenses for personal use. It was then revealed that PM Steven Harper personally bailed out Senator Duffy by writing a $90,000 cheque to replace that which was taken from the cookie jar. This is the second financial scandal that has pinned the Prime Minster and his cabinet as shady and ethically corrupt — raising debate surrounding the true honesty of even the most humanitarian and democratic countries around the world. Also, Rob Ford – that is all.
life. These new laws seriously complicate the upand-coming winter Olympics held in Sochi. Many athletes and prominent international faces have refused to participate in effort of boycotting the new anti-gay movement that violates basic human rights. This one is a massive step back for human rights, and is an ongoing issue.
lifemoney EXOTIC GUNFIRE
Brian Cameron × Jana Vanduin
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Brian Cameron is a writer, traveller, cyclist, and all around good guy. While he is currently based in Whistler, snowboarding the winter away, he is also planning his next adventure. Maybe becoming a Sherpa, who knows? Keep updated on his travels at Neverlostforeverfound.blogspot.ca
I believe we all have a bit of wanderlust in ourselves. While some have more than others, I am driven by it in every aspect of my life. To experience what I did before I was even old enough to order a drink at a bar back in Canada would spook most people. I, however, was hooked. Since my first overseas trip, I’ve lived in Costa Rica and have been to 17 countries – and counting. This column is all about the adventure that is the open road. If you’ve travelled, you’ve experienced highs and lows while away from the comforts of home. The one guarantee is that every time you step on that plane you’re coming home with a story. We’ve all heard amazing stories of people meeting their soul mates under the stars of Australia, and horror stories where friends weren’t sure they’d even make it home in one piece. With that said, I’ll start off with my first trip and gunfight. My high school has a tradition of legendary grad trips, and I had seen most of those high school spring break movies. When it was my turn, I couldn’t have been more stoked for the tropics. Unfortunately, this trip was going to throw me for a spin that would stop most people from ever wanting to travel again. When I got down to the Dominican, it was the first time I'd ever been anywhere outside Canada beyond the U.S.
Everyone checked into the all-inclusive resort and proceeded to down rum like it was our job. The first night we ended up jumping around in the waves with a bunch of other tourists. After waking up and finding my two best friends again, they told me about this amazing pizza place across the street they'd hit the night before. The pizza place was kitty corner to the resort gate on an L-shaped street. We went over for lunch and as we were eating we saw these guys wearing light blue bandanas talking to some tourists outside the gate. The tourists were obviously already rinsed and seemed to be mouthing off to the locals. When they walked away back through the gate, the locals started throwing glass bottles at them. That's when the solo security guard walked out into the street toward them and blasted off his shotgun in the air. Not fazed at all one of the locals walked straight up to the security and tried to punch him in the face. The security guard saw it coming and bucked him down with the butt of his shotgun. When the bandana-clad local started to stand up and pull a pistol from the back of his pants, the security guard blasted him in the stomach not 10 feet away from us. At this point, my two friends and I dove behind the concrete bar since it was an open-air restaurant with no walls to protect us
from stray bullets. The bartender peeked over the bar and tried to calm us saying, "Es ta bien, La Policia will come." Just then a car drove up and grabbed the now mortally-injured gang member and took off. Another lady in the restaurant told us we needed to get back inside the resort because the gang members wouldn’t be able to get in and would be looking for tourists to take out their aggression on. Seconds after she told us that a Peugeot and a Land Rover drove up and out of the door jumped one of the scariest humans I've ever seen. He was dressed in head-to-toe camo with a sawed off shotgun in each hand. I thought to myself, “Fuck yes, the military is here.” Immediately, I was choking on my words as another light blue bandana-clad gangster got out of the same truck. The gang members were all taking cover behind their vehicles as more security poured out from other gates to defend the resort. That’s when my friend looked at me and yelled, "What the fuck do we do?" Terrified, I shouted back, “Just run, man.” Within a split second, all three of us were running as fast as we could right through the middle of the impending shootout. Thankfully it didn't start popping off while we were running through it or I wouldn't be writing this today. We ran straight to
the bar, grabbed a bottle and stood there, whitefaced, cranking shots while all our friends of our grad class were loosing it around us asking what just happened. I knew there'd be a lot of shots on the trip but by no means did I think I'd find gunshots. Most think of Mai Tais, white sand beaches, and perfect weather when they think of a holiday. It’s not always hula girls and fireworks. Over the next few issues, I’ll recount the utter disasters and triumphs of the open road. As I said, the one guarantee is when you step on that plane, you’re coming home with a story.
OPINIONS EDITOR ×
protesting against the protesters IN DEFENSE OF PIDGIN
× Scarlett Aubrey
Carlo Javier × Staff Writer
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impoverished status quo, stagnating any development and finally, it yields more troubles than it does improvements. Rex Murphy of the National Post commented on the developments at this PiDGiN versus protesters fiasco by saying. “I truly believe that the act of protest has, in many contexts, become something of a moral disease. Not all contexts, of course.” Who’s to disagree? It may be too optimistic to assume that people are inherently good, and that people, regarding their agendas, deep down want to do well. However, there are no benefits when the protest results in the vilifying of an innocent man who’s simply out there fulfilling his dream. Grossutti, the chefs, and the staff worked hard to get PiDGiN to where it is now, and they should be commended. As for the protesters, their plan of attack failed when they decided to target Grossutti – because Grossutti did nothing wrong. Today, PiDGiN ranks as among the brightest new stars in Canada’s food scene – enRoute ranked it as among the country’s best new restaurants, it’s one of the popular choices at the 17-day culinary extravaganza, Dine Out Vancouver, and the Daily Meal named it as the among the 10 cutting-edge restaurants in the world.
windows with images of a boy picking his nose, captioning it “Pick-it Line Starts Here.” Grossutti criticized Savant’s ploy as an act of taking advantage of controversy to boost their publicity. “[Their] goal is to get some controversy, the goal is to, for good or ill press, to try and get their name out there and it’s insensitive to make fun of the hardship that we’ve gone through and to the protesters and all they’ve gone through,” he told Global News. “Entrepreneurs are sacred in this city – people aren’t,” Pedersen told the Province. What she seems to be oblivious to, is that their convoluted agenda completely made the concepts of entrepreneurs and gentrification irrelevant in this situation. It no longer matters whether PiDGiN is an upscale restaurant in a drug-dealing hub. In fact, PiDGiN is Grossutti’s first attempt at the restaurant business. There is a very delicate problem whenever the word gentrification is thrown around. The cries for social welfare, and the cries against the displacing of low-income residents are understandable. However, sometimes social activists brand an individual as a traitor to the status quo of their neighbourhood. They declare that the best plan of action is to vilify a young entrepreneur who is ultimately trying to do well in the slum part of the city. Sometimes their protests result in the maintaining of the
amount of protesting for the sake of protesting. Make no mistake, the world needs activists, people who will selflessly go against those who pose harm and injustice to many. But those who have been relentlessly antagonistic to PiDGiN are simply the self-righteous wannabes, who to a certain extent are also hypocritical. Wendy Pedersen, one of the organizers of the pickets, told the Province a rather contradictory statement. “We could have picked any high-end restaurant,” she said when explaining their agenda, “[Grossutti] is just a symbol – it’s not really about him.” Pedersen further added that shutting down PiDGiN was ultimately their goal, as it would have sent a strong message. Groussutti is not the problem, the protesters claim. Yet in their eyes, his restaurant should constantly be vandalized, and frequently be picketed. Well, the only takeaway from the Pedersen’s agenda is that her organized protesters are simply bullies hiding beneath the mask of their pretentious social activism. It’s a wonder as to whether they think that attacking the restaurant, and not the person, will protect them from being called bullies. PiDGiN also proved to be a target for other local businesses. A new clothing store called Savant covered its
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Pardon the cliché but owner/general manager Brandon Grossutti of PiDGiN Restaurant perfectly epitomizes the saying, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” PiDGiN, a relatively young upscale enterprise that opened about a year ago, initially became a symbol of gentrification in the Downtown Eastside. By definition, gentrification is the renovation or improvement of an area so that it conforms to the middle class. It’s an oft-thrown around word, and is usually used liberally. It found itself surrounded by picket lines, riddled with vandalism and even a recipient of threats. “Gentrification,” they cry, but the protesters themselves were rightfully put to task. The reported vandalism of the restaurant and aggression to the customers backfired, and the protesters, much to their surprise – were scrutinized. Finally, society gets it right. Between the supposed issue of gentrification and the evident problem with the so-called activists, the latter weighs heavier. The problem here is not that Grossutti consciously built his upscale restaurant in a relatively poor area. Grossutti is certainly not conforming to meet the standards of the upper and middle class, he’s not a purveyor of gentrification, he’s simply pursuing a dream. Instead, the real problem is this increasing
harping up the wrong tree STEPHEN HARPER'S INORDINATE SECURITY BUDGET VS PEACFUL PROTESTERS Kelly Mackay × Writer
In a recent Vancouver Board of Trade meeting on Jan. 6, two peaceful protestors somehow found their way to the stage behind Stephen Harper. This was achieved simply by dressing all in black – quite like the attire of the waiters and waitresses on staff at the event. Funnily enough, despite Harper’s massively increased security budget, these two protesters managed to do so with “clothes [they] bought from Value Village,” as stated in an interview with CTV News. If walking on stage behind one of the most “protected” men in Canada only requires a trip to the Value Village, then where the hell has $46 million — his security budget since 2011 — been going? Considering that the Northern Pipeline proposals are being heavily protested, one would assume that the man has a fairly large target sitting on top of that toupé of his. Therefore, it is fair that he would have quite a bit of security surrounding him. But $46 million seems to be an obscenely excessive amount, especially given that two well-known protesters are capable of finding their way onstage merely by sporting the colour black. Let’s be serious here, Harper can’t stand on his podium of supposed glory and disregard urgent budget matters with the assumption that his personal security needs are far greater than, say, First Nation relationships or the general economic stability of Canada. In an article by CBC, security expert and retired RCMP officer Larry Busch said the breach is worrisome. “It is a big concern because that is too close, that is much too close for any person who's not been pre-screened to get to the Prime Minister," he said. “Clearly it’s too close. He’s not exactly a political idol given pipeline affairs, there-
fore these ‘pre-screenings’ should probably use at least some of the $46 million to carefully screen such events.” Busch went on to say that, “You can bet there's going to be a lot more threat and risk assessment, background work being done for the Prime Minister." Which is what we all anticipated to be where the security budget would be going, but many will be glad to hear that it might actually go towards what its name suggests. What makes this even more amusing is that the two protesters are actually well-known to the RCMP for their involvement in past environment-related protests. If this “background work” had been completed, then perhaps the intricately planned disguises would have not gone unnoticed. The only real assault Harper has ever been faced with was a 2010 pie to the face – which despite being hilarious – was no real threat. If a pie to the face is the only real confrontation that Harper has been faced with, then what’s with the $46 million? Napkins cost less than a dollar, spoons are free at most grocery stores, and dignity is priceless. Harper, however, seems to lack all three. In an interview with The Toronto Sun, RCMP spokesperson Lucy Shorey stated that, "The RCMP cannot provide a specific breakdown of the costs related to the protection of the prime minister and his family since this could compromise the current security measures put in place.” Which comes as absolutely no surprise, but also stated in the same article, the statistics are that, since 2011, $46 million has been budgeted for such security measures. Shorey went on to say that, “The RCMP determines the level of protection to be provided to the prime minister and his family by evaluating the
threat and determining the most appropriate measures to take." In response to this, perhaps what we would all like to know is at what point exactly does a protest become a threat? At no point would anyone feel comfortable having someone standing behind them openly protesting their words. What we’re lacking is clarity on what exactly determines the term “security budget”, since the security budget isn’t as easy to read as the sign upheld by the protesters standing behind Harper on stage. This isn’t even the first time this has happened, either. With the recent tragic loss of Nelson Mandela, the funeral ceremony hosting his close family and friends, a random man managed to make his way onstage acting as the interpreter for deaf people. While Mandela’s son proceeded to discuss his father’s achievements and worldwide impact, this man was signing sentences such as “the angels have descended,” and “cigarette, cigarette,” which clearly were not the same as what was actually being said. The same response to this was heard by the security at the event, in that they also said they were shocked by this and did not know how it happened. Security is clearly becoming a bit of an issue for our global governments; either that, or people have got a lot better at sneaking around. Back to Harper, though. Another concern is the fact that the two protesters are very well known by the government due to their passionate involvement in environmental protests, therefore this supposed “screening” seems to not have been implemented at all. Perhaps those involved in securing the event were too busy applying for parttime jobs because the job isn’t all they had hoped it would be. Regardless, the protesters got on stage,
× Mustaali Raj
Harper’s security budget is at an all-time high, and the next time anyone disagrees with anything politically-oriented, they should head on over to Value Village, pick up a black maxi dress, and bus downtown to chill with the prime minister.
assembling team canada WHY POPULARITY DOESN'T GUARANTEE A ROSTER SPOT Gabriel Scorgie
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Hockey games aren’t won on paper and selecting players for the Olympics isn’t synonymous with dressing an all-star team. Simply bringing the best Canada has to offer isn’t going to work, just ask Russia what they learned from the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Games when their superstar team was eliminated by Canada seven to three and failed to even medal. As a result, a few surprise selections were made when the roster was announced on Jan. 7. A lot of people were upset when the lineup was announced because of some very popular players were being left off the roster. But make no mistake, the selection committee knew exactly what they were doing and picked the best possible roster they could. Overall, they’re collectively very fast on the international ice. Team Canada can also boast great size, strength, depth, and most importantly chemistry. They aren’t the 24 most popular players or the 24 players with the most points and that is why they are headed into Sochi as the gold medal favorites. Looking at the lineup, it’s clear that the selection committee over at Hockey Canada had a list of priorities when selecting this roster and that one of their biggest concerns was getting players
in their natural position. On defense, they have four left and four right defensemen to ensure that nobody will be playing their off-side, even though that meant leaving better right defenseman Brent Seabrook at home to make room for a player like Dan Hamhuis. At the forward position, there are four left-wingers and three right-wingers out of a possible 14 skaters. That may not appear balanced until you consider Steven Stamkos played as a winger early in his career and that is where he will be playing in the Olympics should he take the ice following his recent injury. If he isn’t rink ready, then either St Louis or James Neal could be called as replacements on golden boy Sidney Crosby’s line. Their second concern was team chemistry. In a short tournament like this you have roughly one week to develop chemistry and find the lines that will work best in the pursuit of gold. In the Olympics where one bad game could potentially spell disaster, it’s important to take as much guess work out of the equation as possible. As a result, Hockey Canada went with proven commodities instead of hoping the players would be able to figure it out on their own. Defensively, Jay Bouwmeester and Alex Pietrangelo have been a top shutdown pairing in the NHL
all year while Keith and Weber demonstrating great chemistry in the 2010 Olympics. On the offensive side, Johnathan Toews plays almost every game for the Blackhawks with Patrick Sharp on his line and the same goes for Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf in Anaheim. All four players are considered top players in the league and are fairly non-controversial choices. The pick that does have a lot of people talking, however, is Chris Kunitz. When people scanned through the lineup and saw the name Chris Kunitz, their first reaction was almost unanimously one of shock. Especially when they realized that he was chosen over superstars like Giroux and St Louis. What is even more shocking is that this apparent “no name” also happens to be sixth in the NHL in points. Kunitz is also the number one point-getter for all left-wingers in the NHL currently and has proven that he has chemistry with arguably the best player in the world and certainly the best player on team Canada, Crosby. When you consider chemistry and that Stamkos will be playing the same position, it starts to become hard to see where either Giroux or St Louis fits on the roster. One of the hardest and most often overlooked parts about building a national team is creating one that has an identity. Anybody who watched
Canada in the World Juniors over December knows what can happen if a team plays as a group of individuals. This team will have a game plan. With Crosby, Tavares, Getzlaf, and Toews down the middle, they have an elite playmaker centring each line with a big, fast, and skilled sniper on each wing. Those prerequisites are likely why the 6’4 behemoth Rick Nash got the nod over the 5’11 Claude Giroux, or the tiny 5’8 St. Louis. Although both skilled, they are considered pass-first rather than shoot-first players and did not fit the identity of the team. The toughest job outside of the NHL in hockey is being on the selection committee or the coaching staff for Team Canada. If you lose, you get criticized by the entire nation and even if you win, most will say that they would’ve been even better if [insert name here] was chosen. Did they select the 14 best forwards? No. Nobody should have expected that. But they did choose the six top centres, the best wingers who fill necessary roles and a defense that can play as a unit. They might not be bringing the most skilled roster to Sochi, but they are bringing the best.
vancouver bachelorettes OUR WOMEN AREN'T PICKY, BOYS CAN'T TYPE Julia Gabriel × Writer All across Canada, single men have been taking their signature moves from the coffee shop to the computer, giving hope to women that the end of the oh-so-awkward public pick-up is near. For many singles, online dating has become another way to form a relationship, yet men in Vancouver might find the chat room a bigger flop than the club — more so than anywhere else in Canada. A survey conducted by popular dating site AYI.com has come to the conclusion that Vancouver women are the least responsive online daters in the country, and has thus given them the title of being the pickiest daters in Canada. Not surprisingly, female Vancouverites have come to their own defence about the new title, leaving bachelorettes across the city explaining that it’s not being picky that’s preventing them from hitting reply. Implying that women have unusually high standards in Vancouver was not the intended outcome of the survey, but that is how the results were interpreted by many readers. Labelling Vancouver females as picky is probably a lot easier than changing your online dating profile to be more appealing. What the survey actually proved was that ladies in the city with online dating profiles are less likely to reply to a potential match when compared to women in other cities across Canada. The dating site AYI.com dubbed Vancouver women as the “pickiest daters” based on these results, even though their survey was limited to online dating only. The real problem with this new title is that Vancouver women are being blamed for having too high of standards based on a survey with limited resources, when the real focus should be on why it is that these women are being less responsive to online flings than others. Could it be, perhaps, the men sending the messages, rather than the women receiving and rejecting them?
× Lisa Kokol In response to this question and the AYI survey, Global News conducted an online poll and interview. Gathering responses from both male and females, Global received comments defending both sides of the dating realm, proving the survey’s results to be true – but with a good reason. Vancouver ladies did agree with AYI’s findings that they are less responsive to online suitors, often ignoring messages from men who don’t interest them or come across as too forward. Women claimed that this was because, though online dating services are often effective, they have not been proven to be “creep-free.” As with any website that involves mingling with strangers, online dating can have a certain level of risk. “I get really scared of the online dating because I’ve heard hor-
of spending the rest of her night interpreting what exactly that smiley face means. Based on the comments Vancouver women gave to Global News, the solution to a man’s online dating woes is simple: Instead of pointing the online curser at women for being picky, why don’t men pursuing an online romance learn how to flirt? With a man starting and maintaining a good conversation, women would find it easier to rule out creeps, as well as fully understand and enjoy the message in the first place, causing them to actually open, read, and reply to their inbox. Men could try replacing the classic “nm, u?” with a more civilized and thought-out reply. No promises, but a well-constructed sentence with more vowels can quickly transform an online frog into a cyber-Prince Charming. “Crafting a first message that may actually get a response isn’t rocket science — reference their interests [that means read the profile],” Strapagiel suggests. “Don’t talk about her like she’s a piece of meat and ask her about herself.” So ditch the impersonal “Hey Sexy ;)” for a simple “Hello,” add an innocent smiley face – no winks until the third date – and the chances for a successful conversation will increase by a mile. It turns out that talking online can be just as simple as talking in person when done properly and getting a so-called “picky” woman from Vancouver to reply to a message can be easier than this study suggests.
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ror stories and there are lots of creeps on there,” posted Facebook user Stephanie McGavin. “So I definitely understand why you don’t always get back to certain people.” Because the fright of a possible online dating disaster is the number one reason Vancouver women say they don’t reply to every notification on their dating profile, it’s clear that so called “pickiness” is just being cautious. If being safe means missing out on a date with the eHarmony mystery man, then so be it. The difference between being picky and being safe is not the only reason Vancouver women don’t deserve to have won the gold medal for high standards. Blogger Lauren Strapagiel explains it’s not just the struggle for safety when choosing an online date. “Most of these men are probably perfectly pleasant guys who would love to talk about your favourite TV show over a latté, but their messages don’t quite convey that.” As any Myspace veteran and Twitter pro knows, online messages are easy to misinterpret, especially when written poorly. Without the cute stutter or coy smile one would see in person, it is easy to label an innocent wink-face emoticon as being sexual instead of sarcastic. It also can cause a message to come across as boring or dull, while the writer intended it to be intriguing and witty. With ill-composed messages running rampant among dating sites, it is easier for a woman to quickly click the ignore button instead
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× Matthew Wolferstan
Alberta’s Destination University. Make it yours.
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What can the past teach you about tomorrow? This is just one question that Karissa Patton (BA ‘13) is asking at the University of Lethbridge in the Master of Arts program. The MA program at the U of L offers you a personal and customized degree so you can answer the questions that interest you the most. You will explore innovative and interdisciplinary areas of research while working alongside faculty members who are world-renowned experts in their fields.
Apply by February 1 for Summer 2014 or Fall 2014. All applicants will be considered for the School of Graduate Studies Award of Excellence worth $10,000.
For more information, visit: www.uleth.ca/graduatestudies
Celebrating 30 years of Excellence
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CABOOSE EDITOR ×
footloose Gabriel Scorgie × Writer
“Quit fucking around, give me back my feet,” said the terrified twenty something year old man. He was speaking to his now confused and amused friend who had just shifted his focus from the blonde in front of him to his terrified friend. Now, that isn’t usually a sentence you would expect to hear when you first walk into Disneyland for the first time. I personally thought it was a brilliant way to start my family vacation but unfortunately, due to the uncommonness of such a claim, most people around labeled the poor guy as ‘chemically unbalanced’ and he was quickly escorted away by my two personal favourite Disney characters, Mickey Mouse and Goofy. But those few moments were enough to get my brain racing. Because I didn’t see him as insane. No, in fact what I saw was a visionary paving the way for generations of amusement park attendees. For what he displayed in that moment is what every amusement park visitor hopes to experience when they come here - a genuine adrenaline rush. Consider that long-haired, tie dye wearing hippie’s mindset for a moment. For a while, he was genuinely terrified that he had lost his feet. Just imagine what he must have been feeling in those moments. Thoughts of fear, confusion, and uncertainty must’ve been running through his mind at a mile a minute. He literally had just lost a part of who he was for some inexplicable reason and there was nothing he could do about it. He was helpless; his feet were out of his hands. But isn’t that what everybody hopes they will get out of a trip to an amusement park? Isn’t that why people go on terrifying rides? Because of the little voice in your head that tries to convince you that this is
the time the roller coaster goes into the saw instead of below it? Maybe that’s just me. Mother used this as an excuse to tell me about the terrible dangers of drug use and how disappointed she would be if I ever so much as looked at the stuff. “Nobody who has done drugs has ever been seen with respect in my eyes Sam.” She said, blissfully unaware of her hypocrisy as dad returned from the car after smoking his second joint of the day. “Sorry, had to make a phone call,” he said. “Did I miss anything exciting?” He smelled like a mix between a dispensary and a cologne factory. “Just some filthy hippie who thought he had lost his feet. Disgraceful really.” mother replied, with her nose so high the whole park could see down it. I often wondered if she was lonely up there on her pedestal. “Really? What a shame,” he replied. I could tell that he wanted to hear more but he knew better than to ask her for the details. As soon as she had walked ahead far enough he whispered in my ear, “You’re gonna have to tell me all about it over burgers and fries tonight, alright?” I laughed and nodded. I got along with my dad much more than I did with Mother. He had the kind of open mind and outlook on life that is becoming increasingly hard to find in people these days. A full believer in letting people make their own decisions, he would probably be delighted if I came home one night and asked if anyone had seen my feet. Even without the heavy use of mind-altering chemicals Disneyland was still enjoyable, although I couldn’t help but wonder once in a while what it would’ve been like with a couple substances running through my body. We spent the day like any family does when it’s their first time at Disneyland.
× Crystal Lee
We waited in line for hours in the burning hot sun to go on all kinds of different rides; I got my photo taken with all the best Disney characters and we ate mini doughnuts until we felt like we were going to puke (and although he’ll never admit it, I’m fairly sure that was why dad needed a brief
‘bathroom break’ after the teacups). It’s amazing though, how a couple minutes and an event that doesn’t at all involve you can completely alter your day. Every once in a while my mind would drift off and I would find myself wondering if the man ever did find his feet.
“It must be something special,” she continued, oblivious to his growing impatience. “Why else would you be lugging that thing around in the middle of the night?” “It’s nothing.” “Is it?” He didn’t respond. “It has to be something.” She nodded, agreeing with herself. “Nothing is usually something.” He snapped. “Why are you here in the middle of the night?! Don’t you have a nice, warm bed to die in?” The old woman lifted her eyes briefly to meet his, then moved them down again to the box. “I could hold it for you,” she said. Her offer at first seemed genuine and oddly sweet, considering what he had just said to her, but upon further consideration, he thought he detected a hint of wanting. “No, thank you.” He resumed his pace, and his manners. “Why not?” She stood, quicker than he expected, though he could still hear the cracks of her knees. “Just let me hold it for you.” He stopped again. “I said no, you hag! Leave me alone!” The manners left as quickly as they came. “Don’t you wanna warm your hands in your
pockets?” she asked, sickly sweet in her tone. She took a stiff step towards him, still staring at the box. He did, more than anything, but he would never give her the satisfaction. This was war. “My hands are fine.” She shook her head. “They’re black.” He looked down at his fingers, but only for a moment, as he heard her shuffle towards him once more. “I swear to God, lady. Another step and I’ll throw you under the bus.” She met his gaze and said in a voice even sweeter than he remembered, like flies around a piece of rotten fruit: “The bus isn’t coming.” “What?” He felt weak. When was the last time he’d eaten? “The bus never comes.” He took a step back, shaking his head. Had the night always been this dark? She slowly lifted her arms. With a last crumb of hope, he looked down the still and empty street. “I told you,” she croaked, as he turned his eyes back to meet hers. “The bus never comes.” She lunged.
helter shelter Michael Bull × Writer
47 issue N o . 14
12:33 a.m. and had been snowing for days. These facts, however, did nothing to stem the veritable onslaught of curses, insults, and threats from his cracked, bluish lips. “Your mother would beat you senseless if she heard you talk like that.” He turned around to see a seemingly fragile old woman sitting on the small metal bench. He was shocked and slightly ashamed. How long had she been sitting there? “How long have you been sitting there?” he asked, marveling and slightly put off by her graceful silence. He had been muttering and pacing for what seemed like hours, and here was this old woman, with her tightly curled white hair, weathered face, and clear blue eyes, sitting and watching, not saying a word. She pointed with her bright blue mittens to the package he held ever-so-closely against his chest. “You’ve been holding on to that box for dear life.” Her eyes never wandered from between his two hands. In no mood to be trifled with, he thought for a flash about beating the old women to death and stealing her mittens, but decided against it. He didn’t have the heart for such savagery, no matter how cold it was.
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Shelters were the most useless invention to ever exist. It was becoming increasingly apparent, though the thought only occurred to him now, that no matter the weather and no matter the circumstance, the bus shelters under which he had been hiding himself for what seemed like his entire life were of no comfort and of no respite. He pulled the collar of his coat around his neck and braced himself against the ceaseless and moaning wind. His efforts were of no avail, and he could feel the cold cling to every part of his body, to every joint, to every muscle, to every bone. Snow stuck to his eyelashes, and his fingers, curled around a frozen cardboard box, were phantoms, shadows and memories of his normally warm self. He should have worn gloves. Why hadn’t he worn gloves? No matter. The damage was done, or was going to be done if that wretched but presumably warm bus didn’t come chugging down the street soon. Secretly he hoped for severe and irreversible frostbite so that his hands would have to be amputated and replaced with hooks. Sadly, he had to put up with the folly and misfortune of his vulnerable little meat fingers, and his odd little fantasy was to remain just a fantasy. For now. The bus was late. Understandably so, as it was
CABOOSE EDITOR ×
SHOTGUN REVIEWS: UNTHEMED & UNTAMED
FRIENDS WHO ARENT ON FACEBOOK
THE MILITANT VEGAN
ODE TO A ROOMMATE
Faye Alexander // Opinions Editor
James Martin // Writer
Kelly Mackay // Writer
Paisley Conrad // Columnist
Everyone is always shitting on Edmonton, claiming it’s just some freezing gray tundra of cement with no redeeming qualities, but I happen to disagree. People are quick to point to Montreal or Toronto as Canada’s “hot-spots”, but let’s be real – they’re a bit played out. Plus lately it’s hard not to notice Alberta. It could be all that oily sand everyone’s talking about, but the real “black gold mine” is Edmonton. It’s the new Old Montreal. You don’t even know, man. I’ve been back four times in two years. I guess you could say I’m “Edmondicted”. You can use toonies and loonies at the local peeler bars there, and nothing beats watching a naked woman walk around with a magnet on a stick. Edmonton is also home to the biggest mall in the world, so you can finally be inside a huge mall forever. A river runs through it – and that’s also the name of a movie. Plus there is this bar there called “Filthy McNasty’s” and with a name like that, why wouldn’t you? And it’s probably the closest you’ll ever get to Red Deer.
When I learned my friend was shunning the kingpin of social media, I was perplexed. With practically everyone else he knows connected to the blue-and-white hive-mind, wouldn't the Fear of Missing Out be crippling? My answer came when he gave me hell for forgetting to invite him to a get-together that had only been organized through Facebook. No matter how many other people use it, letting a buddy miss out on something because they couldn't be invited via Facebook is an incredibly lame excuse. And so I (along with our mutual friends) got in the habit of calling/texting/e-mailing/carrier-pigeoning this guy any time something was going on. And that's when I realized that he actually had it all figured out. You see, because my friend is now known as "the guy without Facebook", he has developed his own personalized stream of important and relevant news and invitations sent to him by everyone he knows, devoid of any spam or filler. The rest of us waste our time sifting through countless updates and invites we don't care about from people we hardly remember, and pass the best stuff along to him. Well played, sir.
Never underestimate the resilience of a militant vegan. Standing calm and collected in a grocery store in Portland, I found myself cornered by a fake-furred, seed bearing, and aggressively-statured vegan. Pointing to the bacon I was defensively clutching, she asked me: "do you know where that came from?", To which I replied: "I know where it's going," and proceeded to re-plug my headphones. I’m fairly certain she carried on this conversation with the back of my head, but I chose to be more pre-occupied with Neil Young shooting his baby down by the river. The question in general was fairly baseless considering I'm not too sure the seeds or fake-furred jacket came from her back garden; regardless, I was left to ponder on a specific statement that continues to resonate with me: if you care about the animals so much, then perhaps you should stop eating all of their food.
It is said that after watching someone do the little things, and observing their quirky habits, you have no choice but to love them. Nine months into my current living arrangement with my roommate, I'm still not sure about that. Her favourite treats include ice cream (that I have bought – she never eats her own) and frozen peach juice from a can (preferably No Name brand). She can frequently be seen using her hands as puppets of her boyfriend and I; our dialogue usually consists of ridiculous arguments. One day, I came home to all of her long blonde hair laid out on a towel on the living room floor. Upon questioning her on her extensions (which I had never seen before), all she had to say is that she was “letting them breathe for once.” Once I went into her room and caught her cutting her leg hair with a pair of nail clippers. When questioned about this bizarre happenstance she shrugged and remarked that “razors don't cut close enough.” As to her allegiance to the American Flag, I have on good authority that she often sleeps just wrapped in one, nothing else on. But you didn't hear it from me.
OVER THE LINE × Christina Kruger-Woodrow W/ LEAH THE BOSS DRAKE ON SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE BASICALLY JUST LATE-NIGHT DEGRASSI JUSTIN BIEBER EGGS A HOUSE AND GETS EXILED TO CANADA
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47 issue N o . 14
TWEETING JUST TO GET NEW FOLLOWERS #PATHETIC #DESPERATE @MSELLEMAE
CATS NATURE’S ASSHOLES KATE MOSS TURNS 40 AND STILL LOOKS BETTER THAN ME PINEAPPLE EXPRESS COMING SOON TO VANCOUVER AGING BEST DONE WITH GRACE. OR DENIAL. SEASON 3 OF GIRLS ALL HAIL LENA DUNHAM OSCAR NOMINATIONS HOLLYWOOD’S GREAT CIRCLE JERK SAYING “HAPPY HOLIDAYS” IN JANUARY BEST DONE TO A SHRINK OR SOMEONE ELSE THAT CAN HELP YOU