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jan/feb 2011 issue 2

Better than ever.

return of slickity jim's

a free publication fo yo po' self

It affects all of us.

¬¬ Mainly monthly

the war on drugs

mainly main magazin

3289 Main Street: at Main & 17th

3250 Main Street: at Main & 17th

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2610 Main Street: at Main & 10th

contents 4 13 14 16 20 24 27 28

The vienna declaration Sam Eifling & Hassam Arshad

artist profile Nick Gregson

the return of slickity jim's Ruven

coffee/ science/ kafka's Maggie Rust

comfort me Dani Barnes

lg's & lb's 101 Reena Gacad

aftermap Ray Hsu & Katie Fedosenko

downpour Ashley Andel Cover Image by John Biehler

Mainly Main is printed 10 times a year by the Mainly Main Group. No parts of Mainly Main Magazine may not be reproduced in any form without prior consent from the publisher. All content © Copyright Mainly Main 2010 Designed by Rachelle Harvey | @MainlyMain #555-3495 Cambie Street Vancouver, BC V5Z 4R3 Advertising inquiries should be directed to:

jan/feb 2011

mainly main magazine | jan/feb 2011

oh, hello a word from our creative director:

Last month was the debut of Mainly Main Magazine. At the time, I wasn’t sure what to write about. What can be said about a new publication that has yet to find its voice? The thoughts in my head seemed impossible to put down. A month in, it all seems to make sense. This magazine doesn’t need to explain itself. It’s the voice of our community. From the folks you see everyday at Gene to the fellow with the plush toys outside of Blockbuster. This is about all of us. Our voice will be determined by you. We’re excited to see where this goes, and hope you’ll join us. If you have a story idea we’d love to hear it. Send us an email:

As an entrepreneur, comedian and world traveler Ruven enjoys wearing brightly coloured socks. A man about town, he can be found most mornings sleeping. In the afternoons you can likely find him drinking. Follow him on Twitter @TheRuven.


the vi declar

mainly main magazine | jan/feb 2011

ienna ration words by Sam Eifling | Photos by Hassam Arshad

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One reason I signed the Vienna Declaration – a worldwide progressive drug policy, developed largely by AIDS scientists in British Columbia, which you should also consider signing – is a married couple I know who used to cook a lot of meth. They live back in my home state of Arkansas. Nice folks, with cute kids and a big house in the suburbs. They decided meth wasn't the best career path once they became parents, but when they talk about those days, you get the sense that they miss the life, at least a little. They were skinny. They were productive. They turned into paranoid chain-smokers, but when your cheekbones are jutting out fetchingly and you get to clean your truck at an empty car wash at 3 a.m. because you're obsessive and insomniac, a touch of cardiovascular damage seems a fair price to pay, no? They eventually quit because, as they describe it, they watched (through binoculars, while smoking cigarettes at a furious pace) cops surveil and eventually close in on their neighbors, who were growing marijuana. They had convinced themselves they were the ones police had been staking out. The stress became too much, and they decided they had to start thinking of the young'uns.


I'd sooner drink a highball of kerosene than smoke meth. It's fascinating to me that some people ingest a recipe that calls for hydrochloric acid, but then, drug habits are so devilishly personal. You probably scratch your itch with some socially acceptable fix – nicotine, caffeine

science, not ideology, should drive drug policy or alcohol. You have also, guessing by the latest surveys, probably broken a law by using other drugs – marijuana, prescription pills, mushrooms or coke. You likely did so without any overriding concern that you would be arrested, though the potential was there. You probably haven't injected yourself with heroin, other opiates or cocaine, though worldwide there might be 16 million or so who use intravenous drugs. (The UN admits a high degree of error on those estimates.) People who do undertake a great deal of risk. They risk becoming zombified addicts. They risk getting sick from the fillers that dealers use to cut those drugs (I'm told baby laxative is common in Vancouver's heroin). They risk imprisonment, physical violence, hepatitis and worse. As a group, intravenous drug users account for perhaps 10 percent of the world's 33 million HIV cases.

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mainly main magazine | jan/feb 2011

The wa on dru has fai The risks are enormous, but most of those users are self-medicating in some fashion, just as you and I do. They just do it to a degree many of us would call suicidal.

Yet it's not the same as suicide. It's reversible. People come back from heroin addictions, just as they shape up and drop meth habits. You can, as Trainspotting's Mark Renton would suggest, choose life, choose a job, choose a career, choose a family, choose leisure wear and matching luggage – and all the rest. But you will be less likely to survive if you have AIDS or hepatitis C or some other ghastly infection because you shared needles or cooked up with water from a pissed-in alley puddle.


This is where the Vienna Declaration steps in. To be concise, it says that sane drug policy fights AIDS. Its writing committee was chaired by Evan Wood, a doctor and University of British Columbia professor who directs the Urban Health Research Initiative. Also on the committee were Thomas Kerr of the UHRI and Julio S. G. Montaner, who directs the BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS. It may have Vienna in the name, but it has Vancouver's fingerprints all over it.

ar ugs iled mainly main magazine | jan/feb 2011

The war on drugs is a fiasco

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The declaration calls on world governments to account for the massive harm that drug prohibition wreaks. It asserts that science, not ideology, should drive drug policy, and that law enforcement shouldn't undermine public health. It has a whole slew of endorsements from organizations and scientists, and aims to carry the weight of those endorsements, including yours, to the next International AIDS Conference, in 2012, in Washington D.C. The war on drugs is a fiasco. I say that in the company of such reactionary leftists as the U.S. Conference of American Mayors (“the war on drugs has failed”), former presidents of Brazil, Mexico and Colombia (“The war on drugs has failed. And it's high time to replace an ineffective strategy with more humane and efficient drug policies,” in the Wall Street Journal), U.S. Drug Czar Gil Kerliokowske (“[I]t has not been successful”) and at least 65 percent of Americans.

Outside the First World, it's orders of magnitude worse. The International Harm Reduction Association counts 76 countries without any harm reduction strategies for injecting drug users, and about 30 states in which drug use carries the death penalty. China, charmingly, has taken to executing drug offenders on International Anti-Drugs Day.

Even in the United States, progressive drug measures seem foreign; imprisonment still seems to eclipse treatment, and we'd rather punish people than give them the means to to stay healthy. South of the border Vancouver is famous as the home of Insite, the Downtown Eastside facility where users can shoot up under the watch of a medical staff. Europe has several safe-injection (or supervised-injection, if you prefer) facilities; Insite is the only one in North America. Contrary to the perception outside Vancouver, Insite isn't a heroin pub: You have to BYO. What you can get at Insite, free, is sterile paraphernalia, a working sink, a tourniquet. You're not shooting up around people who will rape you or rob you once you're high. You're not going to die from an overdose: Insite to date has resuscitated everyone who has OD'ed there. You are going to get a clean, welllighted place to do your business, and maybe get some medical care. And you get to go where everybody knows your name. That's important. Because when you decide you're tired of being high all the time, you can walk in and say, “I want to talk about getting clean,” which I saw a young man do on a morning I spent at the facility. And they can connect you to social services that specialize in dealing with drug users – something not everyone in the medical or social welfare is willing to do.

this should concern everyone


mainly main magazine | jan/feb 2011

Maybe, too, when you come back from addiction, you won't have shredded your veins. Maybe you won't have hep C. Maybe you won't have AIDS. Then again, maybe you will. HIV is sexually transmitted, but it moves even quicker via dirty needles. This should concern everyone. You, I and everyone we know are six degrees from Kevin Bacon, and it's a fair assumption that he has had sex with a drug user. Frankly we're The United States has demonstrated a special talent for ignoring all in a big planetary orgy here, and world opinion, but on this one, the chorus is awfully solid: at least 3 million of the people at Five Nobel laureates, numerous health organizations, various the party have shown up with HIV governments (including Vancouver's) and about 20,000 of their only because they didn't have a friends have endorsed the Vienna Declaration since last summer. clean needle. Anyone can sign it in about 45 seconds at www.viennadeclaration. I'm not trying to be flip. You have a com. Vancouver got this one right, so let's work to export the idea: stake in this, even beyond the duty Fight AIDS, not drug users. to watch over the most vulnerable among us. Vancouver and British Columbia have stuck up for Insite Sam Eifling is an American studying at the University of again and again. Now doctors here British Columbia Graduate School of Journalism. He has some are trying to move the needle, in a vaguely highbrow interests but can't think of them right now manner of speaking, for the world's while he watches a massive backhoe gouge out a Kitsilano addicts, and prevent AIDS in places parking lot. On Twitter, he's @SamEifling. where it's an epidemic.


Hassan Arshad is a University of British Columbia Graduate School of Journalism student. He is a freelance photojournalist, writer and a graphic designer working in Vancouver. Unfortunately, his interests are of little importance as his school workload demands all his free time.

Nick Gregson is a young artist who has successfully made the transition from graffiti artist to working on canvas. Nick's paintings are inspired by the East Vancouver culture as a landscape. His painting are gaining a reputation as accessible art because of the low prices he charges for large canvases. There is buzz around Nick's new work, so support the art scene and add him on Facebook.

nick gregson

mainly main magazine | jan/feb 2011

artist profile:


“At the end of the day, it’s going to be a much better restaurant. It’s going to be bigger, have a better use of space and include a private dining room. I like this part of Main better now.”

The Return of

Slickity Jim's


mainly main magazine | jan/feb 2011

Can we still expect to find our usual favorites on the menu? The character of the menu will stay the same during the day. There’s definitely going to be some changes. I spent a month or so traveling the Southern US. My trip had an influence on the menu and will have a southern-style feel to it. I’ve got a smoker being shipped up from the southern states. A lot of smoked food, some food cooked on wood planks. Dinner will be a chalk-board menu, also with a southern influence. I think it’s a much better menu now. Is this Slickity Jim’s reinvented? A person isn’t their body, a person is their soul. Just ‘cause Slickity Jim’s is in a new building with a new sign or new seats, doesn’t really mean it’s been reinvented. It’s been changed, metamorphisized. How are you going to decorate the new space? The way the previous restaurant was decorated is the only way I can decorate. I still have a room full of the same décor in my house. I can’t even begin to start with how much stuff I have! It certainly will retain the character.

Interview by Ruven photo by dasha lushnikova In November 2009, Slickity Jim’s burned to the ground in a tragic fire that left a large void in the neighborhood. Fortunately, owner Mike Zalman is resurrecting his famed restaurant, complete with some exciting changes. We sat down with him to find out what to expect.

On this space, I worked with an architect on the design. It will be much more cohesive and functional. It’s essentially the same, modeled after an old diner style train car. It will have a private dining room in the back with French doors that open onto a park, heritage oak flooring…I’m really happy with how the restaurant is being recreated. It still has the eclectic personality, telling a story on the walls.

Slickity Jim’s Chat 'N Chew is slated to open in February at 3469 Main Street.


coffee/ science/

KAFKA'S by maggie rust A blogger based in Mount Pleasant, Maggie Rust also coordinates an international art fair. A long time lover of both coffee and the arts, Main Street has been home since leaving Toronto for the last, best West.


mainly main magazine | jan/feb 2011

There’s more to real coffee houses than Macbooks and aloof baristas. New kid on the block, Kafka’s is coffee for nerds; home to a trio of coffee brewing methods you won’t find in other houses: 1. The Pour Over, 2. The Syphon, and 3. The Aeropress.

a bit more water is allowed to pass through the grinds before your barista hands over your cup.

Travel back in time to grade 10 science and Bunsen burners. A contraption called the Syphon consists of a base holding a glass bulb filled with water and a glass cylinder with the coffee grounds that fits on top. The water-filled bulb is placed over a heat source; the heated water flows upwards to mix with the grounds. After a moment the coffee is ready, the heat is removed and the bottom of the bulb iced to bring down the temperature, and liquid returns to the bulb.

When folks ask for a drip what they get is the pour-over: a custom-made, one-at-a-time cup. Freshly ground coffee is put into a dampened filter positioned over a waiting cup. Just-boiling water is poured into the filter and allowed to sit for a moment. Then it’s released and

The Aeropress is similar to the French press style of coffee brewing. A cylinder with a filter in the bottom is filled with coffee grinds then water. After allowing the grinds time to mingle with the water, a plunger forces the water out of the cylinder and into your waiting cup. Like that static bulb at Science World that made your hair stand on end, all three brewing methods will shock you with coffee so good you won’t want to corrupt a drop of the rich, clean and flavourful brew.

Kafka's Coffee and Tea is located at 2525 Main Street.


comfort me Location: The Gam Gallery Photographer: Dasha Lushnikova Stylist: Dani Barnes Art Director: Megan Sehn Hair and Makeup: Carole Lagimodiere


Models: Natalie Crema, Briana Lumsden, Carole Lagimodiere

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mainly main magazine | jan/feb 2011

low temperatures & low funds...

Low temperatures and low funds inspired this winter line of "comfort me" ponchos.


Dani created these looks entirely out of consignment comforters and household accessories, using only scissors and Girl Guide knot tying skills. The colors were chosen to match winter; harsh brights and light faded colors. They can be worn with or without clothing, and are guaranteed to keep you nice and toasty.

mainly main magazine | jan/feb 2011 Known as a chameleon for her constant experimentation with visual imagery, Dani Barnes: Fashion Spy, hits our mean streets with a social experiment mentality to expose style, gauge reactions, and evoke public response to educate and open the mind. In studio, her styling world is your playground, where creativity is key and anything is possible… Megan Segn is a freelance journalist with 8 years of downtown ground-zero experience under her belt, and is co-creator of an underground women for women culture blog. Her reflections and interviews in Mainly Mainstreet are raw as she exposes the regrowth of the arts and beauty of the dark side of Vancouver.


LB’s & LG’s 101 Kris Hryniw, a teacher in the Kootenays had a conversation about LG’s with his grade 11 writing class after a female student responded to the prompt, “what creeps you out”, by describing “a fun Friday night for some fourteen-year-old When I first used LG in a sentence my boyfriend girls is getting drunk and hooking accused me of making up words. I explained that LG up with as many guys as they can... stands for Little Girl and it is, in fact, not an arcane It’s bragging rights for them; all term but used to describe girls, usually between their LG friends are proud”. When 12 to 14 years old, who act as if they are older than they really are. Girls who have an LG mindset usually asked about LG’s, the students reinforced their peer’s paper saying that have a distorted perception of confidence, bragging not only are these parties common about how many sexual conquests with older boys but sexual conquests and drinking they have or will achieve. This leaves them vulnerbenders are a celebrated game for able to those who are more than willing to exploit LG’s. One student remarked that them. He scoffed and didn’t believe me. That is until they even keep a point system. he read an article in The Province about an LG party According to the students, LG’s – alcohol fueled parties hosted by older boys to run around half naked at parties, engage in sexual acts with preteen girls. sometimes having sex in front of each other, and have a lot of pride fulfilling a seductress role. Not only are LG’s engaging in sexual behaviour, they may also participate in heavy drug use with one student witnessing “12 and 13 year-olds just whacked right out”.   

by reena gacad


Though not likely the target of exploitation compared to girls, male youth are not immune to this form of labelling either. Urban Dictionary defines an LB, or Little Boy, as “a male being too cocky or immature for his age. Hanging around older women and trying to look older for his actual age”.  

mainly main magazine | jan/feb 2011

I asked a group of teenage boys what images came to mind when they hear the term LB or LG. 15 year old Zack grappled with trying to define the essence of an LB and LG but came to conclude that they “act childish, are a slave to trends” and are easily persuaded. Colin, 16, noted that when he thinks of an LG he thinks of 12 year olds who constantly The LG and LB label is a new term to define an old take sticker pictures at the mall. “I’ve heard phenomenon; tween culture. In the 50’s through girls call each other LG’s”, he said, “like they’re to the 70’s, people used the term TeenyBoppers to mocking each other”. I then asked them if describe young girls who mainly listened to pop they heard of an LG party. They were quick music and/or rock and roll. LB and LG is an ironic to say yes. “People joke around, calling guys term, demonstrating that although males and LG Slayers”, Colin said. Aaron chimed in, “LG females behave beyond their years, they are still, in Hunters”! LG Slayers are guys who are known fact, young boys and girls that have a lot of learning to persistently attract and date younger girls. ahead of them.   They all admit to even calling each other LG Hunters or LB’s. Although a derogatory term for girls, the boys I talked to sometimes used LB's as a buddy term to poke fun at each other.

In Mr. Hryniw’s class, some students blamed the media to be the cause of sexual glorification. They say it’s disgusting to see “padded bikini tops [marketed] for 6 year old girls” at bathing suit stores. They have a point. Female cultural icons throughout the decades have progressively evolved into hyper sexualized role models compared to their male counter parts. Diana Ross to Madonna; the Spice Girls to Ke$ha (she has a dollar sign in her name — how much more evidence of commodification do you need?) It may all come down to perspective. Adults have always been disapproving of the next generation’s culture. Whenever an elder begins a story with “when I was your age” it’s easy to see this gap. However, where's the line? People disapproved of Elvis’ hips. This may be a slippery slope, but when young people’s well being is involved, that may be a good indicator that a subculture may have gone too far.   

When she’s not writing for Mainly Main, enjoying a rom-com, or eating a jalapeno and cheddar scone from Bean Around the World, Reena Gacad works at a public relations agency. Follow her on Twitter @ReenaGacad.


Katie and Ray took public transit. They walked a lot. They embodied the project. They felt it in their muscles. What is public art? they asked each other. Must all art be commissioned to be public? Vancouver built an idea about legacy: nine projects by “established” and “emerging” artists, each selected from over four hundred submissions around the world. During the 2010 Games, these light-based works of art and sculptural installations animated venues and signature locations around the city. But Katie and Ray wondered why those nine. What legacy did they leave? Why did they centre on light? How was “Aboriginal art” included and excluded?

mainly main magazine | jan/feb 2011


the corner of their eyes. Like an artwork wearing a sheet with eyeholes cut out. Something no longer there except between the artworks that still lived in the city. Like the trace of a road in an empty town: still there, unmapped, waiting for a breath of life. Boo.

At first they stood by a public art and, not knowing what else to do, described it. But the longer they stood by a piece of art, the more they couldn't help interacting with it. Which makes sense: many folks experience public art face-to-face rather than on the page, where a city could mould meaning for them.

Did this breath await them in some dimension in the vibrating spaces between the city's atoms? Digit: Latin for finger. The digital world: let your fingers do the walking, as they say, where someone might touch another world. So Katie and Ray thought it might be fun to add a few words, photos, and videos to some vast digital vault that some call Vancouver: cultural scraps towards some collective map rather than some bird's eye topography. Fun is a three-letter word. So is art.

Yet Katie and Ray felt a vibration in

See their legacy on the Aftermap:

ray hsu & katie fedsenko Poet-schmoet. Ray Hsu is a rockstar who happens to write books. Ray describes himself as the neighbourhood kid who gets everyone to build a snowfort. At last count he has published over a hundred and twenty-five poems in over forty journals internationally. He has more degrees than he knows what to do with. He taught writing for over two years in a U.S. prison. He now teaches at the University of British Columbia, where he collaborates across disciplines, districts, and dinner tables. When he isn't winning poetry or teaching awards, he kicks back with a can of Chef Boyardee and a snifter of Hennessey. Catch him at

▪�� Katie Fedosenko is poet, journalist, social media enthusiast. She's in her final year of an Honours English degree at University of British Columbia.



It's cold, wet and it's deep in your bones. The sun is practically rationed, your sanity shifted by daylight savings time. Winter in Vancouver is not only a tilt of Earth, but an unwelcome tilt on your inner pinball machine; you never know what to expect. You'll even say that to yourself as you glance at the earthworms wriggling in the puddles by the snowbanks. @You can have a chance at getting this painting for free if you send a cool TwitPic of yourself in a stellar moment of the rainy season to MainlyMain on Twitter. If we like it, you get the art.

from Ashley Andel Ashley Andel is an obsessive sort of personality, and something of a coin-toss to the wind except that his coin is made of paper, and featuring two heads, neither of which appear to be human. Mr. Andel enjoys watching people do the things they do. Sometimes he participates in the escapades, but most of the time he's practically just your everyday Walter Mitty who can't wait to go home and fiddle about with his paintbrushes. Ashley Andel presents "Brash Play" at the YacTac Gallery Space, 7206 Ontario Street. Opening reception is January 28th at 7pm. The exhibition runs until February 3rd.

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Mainly Main Magazine  

Issue 2: Jan/Feb 2011