Tag Archives: gregor-robertson

Vancouver election-night sketchbook

It was a cold, cold Saturday night by Vancouver standards. I headed toward the Wall Centre in a state of frigid apprehension, my anxiety only partly numbed by the cold, and the knowledge that my trusty sketchbook was in my backpack.

While nearly every objective measure suggested the party I was supporting, Vision Vancouver, was about to win the city’s municipal election, a few recent polls suggested the race had tightened up sharply in the last few days. And they suggested the momentum was with the NPA, Vancouver’s right-wing civic party.

The NPA’s campaign had focused on several targets they evidently considered tempting, including the city’s urban agriculture policies, and new separated bike lanes on a few downtown streets.

I can remember a time when it WASN'T legal to hunt cyclists for food.

In retrospect, I shouldn’t have been so worried. One of the NPA’s last public events included someone dressed in a chicken suit holding a sign that said “Homeless Chickens.” Here’s a handy rule of thumb: If, a day or two before an election, you find yourself appearing at press events with people dressed as chickens, chances are the Big Mo is with your opponent.

(person in chicken suit) I'm not with the NPA. I'm a poultry fetishist.

The TV coverage I saw was on Shaw’s Community Channel 4, which (as far as I could tell) had managed to find a panel of four white male commentators. Come on, people, what is this? A tech conference?

You look pale enough to be a Shaw election commentator.

For a brief while, Gregor Robertson’s NPA challenger, Suzanne Anton, was ahead by several hundred votes. But then a few more polling stations reported and their positions flipped. Not long after that, it became clear that every Vision candidate was cruising to victory, and the mood at the party switched from Confidently Hopeful to Awfully Damn Happy.

(bartender) I prefer a losing party. These people aren't nearly depressed enough to drink heavily.

Once the results were more or less clear, Anton delivered her concession speech. It was classy and gracious, and I liked the part toward the end refuting the idea of politics as a thankless job.

Now, classy and gracious are good. But just once, I’d like to see a defeated candidate really cut loose on the voters.

(politician) You stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid people.

Speaking of speeches – if you’re ever in the position of writing a victory speech (and here’s hoping you are!), you have one big challenge: the crowd is deliriously happy. That means every line for the first five to ten minutes is an applause line.

Every. Line.

(audience cheers for the word The)

(In my defence, a] I never claimed to be a caricaturist, and b] I was standing up and juggling a sketchpad, a beverage and a Sharpie fine-line marker.)

The final results.

Mayor Gregor Robertson’s inaugural address: text and video

Gregor Robertson

Here’s the text and video of Mayor Gregor Robertson’s inaugural address. And here’s an excerpt:

As much as I value the wisdom and experience of my colleagues, we all know there is exponentially more in the homes and offices of our city… in the studios, shop floors and classrooms…in our boardrooms and small businesses … in our galleries, hospitals and parks… there is rich, valuable wisdom and expertise in the people of Vancouver.

In the coming weeks and months, we will be asking every one of you to step up – to offer your ideas and knowledge – to tell us how you want to be involved – to share the mantle of leadership.

Because that’s what citizenship means in the 21st century.

These are challenging times. And we can’t afford not to make every possible use of the creativity, ideas and compassion of our people.

A great time with Gregor Robertson and friends

I did my longest set yet on Friday night at the Vancouver-Fairview NDP fundraiser – and got the best response of my short stand-up career. It was a great audience (and man, do they love Gregor), a terrific emcee (Nicholas Simons) and one hell of a great ten minutes.

Next up were the folks from Rock, Paper, Scissors, and I nearly burst my lungs laughing as they brought the house down. I’ve heard about them but never had the chance to see them in action; it turns out they’re brilliant. Go see them the first chance you get.

After Gregor’s speech thanking everyone and reminding us why we’re doing all of this, it was on to the auction, where I joined Nicholas on-stage. I have never auctioned stuff off before in my life. It’s a strange mixture of bragging (“Why, the frame alone is worth hundreds!”) and begging (“Folks, I know there’s another five dollars out there…”) that reminded me eerily of dating. Fortunately, Nicholas is a genius when it comes to wringing money out of crowds – not to mention funny, warm and irreverent. (Book us now for your upcoming wedding, high school graduation or family reunion.)

All of which is to say, my thanks to Nicholas, Gregor and the riding association, especially Lesli Boldt for suggesting me and organizer Kelly Nichol for biting.

I’m doing stand-up on Friday night at Gregor Robertson’s fundraiser

Comedy update #1: I’m doing stand-up on Friday night at Gregor Robertson’s fundraiser. And better yet, I’m opening for Rock, Paper, Scissors, the very funny Vancouver comedy, corporate entertainment and training troupe.
The scoop:

MLA, Gregor Robertson and the Vancouver Hastings NDP Constituency Association would like to invite you to:
L.O.L. at the Heritage Hall; 3102 Main St.,
Friday April 7, 2006
Doors open @ 7:30 pm Show starts 8:00 pm
cash bar and nibbles served.
Tickets are $50 each.

To purchase tickets by credit card please call: (604) 317 0657; or send your request for tickets to: info@gregorbc.ca