Monday, June 02, 2008

Vancouver's weird.

Alright. I've been in Vancouver for about 2 weeks now, and I've come to a conclusion: Vancouver is weird.

People have this strange tendency to rave about it when they are not there and complain about it while they are. Everyone I spoke to who was from the West in Montreal or Toronto would get this misty look in their eyes when I told them I was moving out here, and they'd muse wistfully, "Oh, i miss the beach/tree/sea/climate/people/good restaurants etc." Talk to them here, and they say that it's hard to make friends here, that the nightlife is bad, the transit is terrible, etc. etc. My suspicion is that there are good things here and bad things. So far I like it.

One thing about Van that I've found particularly bizarre is the way the place seems to be separated out into these very different little pockets. Supposedly this is a small city, but I just took the bus from my new neighborhood to my parents' place, and it took me 1 1/4 hours. Nowhere in Montreal or Toronto would take that long by transit if they are still in the city. People don't really walk around here, and it's true the transit's not great. Hence all the BIKES.

On my trip over here to Kitsilano, aka dog- and baby-town from East Van, aka druggie- and hipster-town, I took the Hastings bus through the infamous intersection, Main and Hastings, which has the highest concentration of intravenous drug users in North America (take that, USA!). Many parts of Vancouver are full of beautiful gardens, high schools, organic food shops, and celebrity-chef owned restaurants. This strip looked a lot more like Mexico. Boarded up buildings, pubs, secondhand stores, women's drop in centres, urban native youth centres, unemployments centres and a whole lot of sad looking people. There's something wrong with the infrastructure here that this whole area is just around the corner from everything else, including, for example, that place I went to recently that was frequented by "shrivelled yacht jockeys and cougar-mistresses-in-waiting." Like I said. Weird.

11 comments:

WeirdedOut said...

I am from BC and I find it weird.
Another thing that is strange. people get upset if
you are opinionated, raise your voice, or swear.

There are serious infrastructure problems here. Most noticeable in the cultural sector.
A lack of community cohesion? I have noticed this whether its something art based, like film, or social activism(like eco causes).
People do their own little thing, they usually dont advertise it much, and they are very quiet about it.
Visit local websites on any activity and you find a lack of posts. (cineworks.ca is one example).
There seems to be less and less annual cultural activities too.

Another weirdness, craigslist. Vancouver has a Flash Friday tradition where people post pictures exposing themselves. You find it in other cities but nowhere do you find so many posts as in the Vancouver Rants and Raves craigslist.

Some Dirty Native said...

"Urban Native Centres"

glad you left that part in.

With all the horrible things on hastings it's true that natives are the worst.

You're a fucking idiot and if I see you out on the street I'm gonna stab your head with my phone

Cody 007 said...

Vancouver and Lower Mainland Areas are very strange indeed. I have found it to be either 1) Third Worlders 2) Drug Addicts 3) Weirdos.

Most of the men here even into adulthood live with their moms and have no balls letting their women walk all over them.

Unknown said...

Vancouver is a strange place with strange people. People here are either 1) Third Worlders 2) Drug Addicts 3) Weirdos still living with their moms into adulthood. Men in Vancouver have no balls or backbone which makes for the women there to be pretty trampy. The girls there literally wear the pants over their men.

Unknown said...

Vancouver has always been a melting pot for slackers and weirdos. If you are from India or a drug addict you will do really well here as the goverment here seems to cater to these two groups

Unknown said...

Vancouver has always been a melting pot for slackers and weirdos. If you are from India or a drug addict you will do really well here as the goverment here seems to cater to these two groups

Unknown said...

Vancouver has always been a melting pot for slackers and weirdos. If you are from India or a drug addict you will do really well here as the goverment here seems to cater to these two groups

Miki said...

Finally, a blog that is well written by a well spoken Author. Vancouver is weird, after having lived here for 5 years, I still don't get it :)

DoomScratch said...

I'm weird, and I love it. So weird that it makes people jealous :)
It truly is best place in the world. No? Try to leave.

Anonymous said...

Vancouver...hmmmm..grown men wearing spandex and neon jackets...desparate joggers/fitness freaks..hipsters with weirdo beards..iphone ipad junkies...BMW's and Mercedes as common as Hyundais..eco freaks that don't understand that Vancouver is the biggest environmental disaster in and of itself

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