fear & loathing in Lotusland

Month: December, 2016

2016: The Scam Reviewed

by Zbigniew

2016: the year the music died and “terror clowns” jumped out of bushes and sought elected office. In local news, nominally progressive civic officials condemn the nominally progressive federal government’s approval of oil pipeline projects, while quietly depositing the contributions of their real estate benefactors. Also, Chip Wilson bought everything.

In 2016 word of Our Scam continued to make its way to some new and exotic lands, including Angola, Bolivia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Curacao, Grenada, Luxembourg, Paraguay, Slovenia, Tunisia and Uganda.

The most popular Scamcouver posts of 2016:

  1. Happy Shadow Flipping!a little piece of agitation propaganda featuring Our Illustrious Mayor and She Leaves Me Wanting
  2. some real estate bumf presenting Burquitlam as an investment fantasy land, in both English and Manadarin
  3. the results of the annual Worst of Vancouver Survey
  4. the survey itself
  5. Our Speculative Future, wherein the Museum of Vancouver’s choice to cozy-up to the real estate industry’s vision for our community is scrutinized
  6. Tagged looks at the evolution of the upper-end of the West Coast lifestyle
  7. Exposed looks back at the circus that was Expo 86
  8. international development capital spills onto the silver-plated screen via Idle Pleasure Acting
  9. Fantasy City, on Vancouver’s burgeoning role as an amusement park
  10. as the forest makes way for capital and fantasies of various shapes and sizes, say hello to the Pseudo Forest

Personal favourite: Home

Over the past year, the most “clicked” media included the following:

Happy Shadow Flipping

Vancouver Spec Sheet

Rezone Sale

In addition to perennial favourites “fuck bob rennie” and/or “bob rennie asshole,” some of the more interesting search terms that drove traffic to this blog over the past year included the following:

  • “vancouver real estate rise in the early 70s and fraudulent real estate schemes”
  • “the worst one on the real housewives of vancouver”
  • “1960s cates park hippie faire north vancouver”
  • “what happen to vancouver its a shithole”
  • “douchebag hipster yoga bc resident”
  • “joel solomen douche”
  • “seymour pacific is fucked”
  • “vancouver is fucked”

A few of the comments posted to this blog in 2016:

“That sums [up] the shithole pretty well in one picture.”

Bubba on:

Lamborghini Special

“A future of highrise pied-à-terres, B&Bs and destination events and venues, all walled off from stark poverty and homelessness by gates and private security. The city as high-priced escort.”

Stanley Q Woodvine, on Fantasy City

“Can you imagine being a person who identifies with this ad? Like having that property price arrow shoot right up your ass, while you soar above the clouds high on the delight of purchasing a shred of hideous smart growth in fucking burquitlam that you believe will somehow grow in value?”

Jenables, on The Cringe: Burquitlam

Scammer of the Year

To be eligible for “Scammer of the Year,” candidates must have been character assassinated in this blog’s “Scammer” category at some point over the course of the preceding 52 weeks. Candidates are judged for their ability to present themselves as stalwart citizens while simultaneously deforming the local psychogeography for their personal enrichment; extra points are awarded for douchey behavior. The winner will be notified of their victory by poison pen letter, which will be accompanied by the cash prize of Hell Money I picked up in Chinatown for some loose change. A likeness of the winner will be installed on the “Strip Mall of Shame” page on this blog –pending the establishment of a brick & mortar version that is still awaiting City Hall approval.

The candidates for the forth annual Scammer of the Year award are:

  1. For blatant disregard for the negative impact of real estate speculation on Lower Mainland communities until her party’s reelection was threatened and then contributing public funds to fuel the market anyways, and her sheer arrogance and jerkiness, British Columbia Premier Christie Clark.
  2. For her too-soft touch on real estate cabal and for contributing to a discussion on “crafting the narrative,” journalist Frances Bula.
  3. For ongoing bat shit crazy responses to matters of public concern, Vancouver Councillor Kerry Jang.

And the winner is … Christie Clark.

r-christy-clark-large570Powell River Persuader

The Last Word

Regarding prospects for 2017, I’m young enough to still hope for the best, but old enough to expect something less than that. Either way, I’m ready. I hope.

Sports Bro

by Zbigniew

Bannister v Landy, 1954 Empire Games Mile, Vancouver, Canada

“The build-up to this race was incredible. Athletics, as one of the truly international sports, had followers all over the world. The first four-minute mile had captured the imagination of millions. And now the first two runners to have broken that barrier earlier in the summer, Roger Bannister and John Landy, were to meet in the Vancouver Empire Games.

“The race received huge coverage in the world press. It was given an array of names, The Miracle Mile, The Mile of the Century. As well, the television cameras were ready to supply the new medium live to an estimated 10 million North American viewers. Radio provided live coverage to the rest of the world. Bannister and Landy had become celebrities, hunted down by reporters and cameramen as soon as they arrived in Vancouver.”


Bannister: “At Vancouver [Landy] had the courage to lead at the same speed in a closely competitive race. His boldness forced me to abandon my time schedule and lose myself quite completely in the struggle itself.”

Landy: “I’d rather lose a 3:58 mile than win one in 4:10.”

Bannister and Landy

Just a few metres from the bronze statue of Bannister and Landy, is another image celebrating sport in Vancouver. More colourful and more modern -even post-modern- a prosaic mosaic featuring a self-involved little fella I like to call “Sports Bro.”

Vancouver Sports Bro

Sport Bro

Seen in Passing: Renfrew & 15th

by Zbigniew

Lamborghini Special

Some Inappropriate Posing

by Zbigniew

An advert offers money to stand in line for a condominium sales offering. Said line-up is reported in the presse faux as evidence of ongoing exuberance in Greater Vancouver’s real estate market, and pretty much ignored by the presse vieux. Apparently, there’s nothing to see here, folks, except maybe a display suite and some floor plans.

Still, I’m curious. Who’s the crowd wrangler? Who is Shannen Carlson?

Appropriately enough, Carlson has a long history of flesh peddling. As the “owner and operator” of Calendar Girl Productions, she oversees such diverse activities as the Whistler Exposed calendar, the Men of Whistler Exposed calendar, and the Bamff Exposed calendar. Fun fact: the inaugural Whistler Exposed calendar won bronze as the Best Wall Glamour Calendar in the 2011 National & World Calendar Awards. “[It’s] like receiving an Academy Award for a calendar,” said Carlson.” It’s a classy calendar; there’s no nudity or inappropriate posing of any sort.”

Marketing one’s goods comes naturally to the native Winnipegger, as evident in her star turn in low budget Cancon feature  Scalpers. That’s Carlson in the trailer, being serviced by the pool boy.  No nudity, but possibly some inappropriate posing -depending on how such things are defined.

Shannon & Ronald