The meat is on the grill and large crowds are in the street in the 200 block of Carrall Street for the Gastown BBQ and Chili Festival.

The event continues today until 7 p.m. and resumes on Sunday (August 31) from noon to 7 p.m. in the same location, culminating in a performance by ambitious local prog rockers Bend Sinister on the outdoor stage.

"Considering we had a little bit of rain this morning, I think the turnout has been absolutely fantastic," festival organizer Eddie Emerman told the Straight. "It just shows the resilience of the Vancouverites."

It's been a wonderful week for fans of blues-rockin' Strat masters Rory Gallagher and Stevie Ray Vaughan.

Although Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt may have come under fire for breaking their pledge that they wouldn't get married until all same-sex couples could marry in the U.S., one of Jolie's former lovers is hearing same-sex wedding bells.

Japanese American model and actor Jenny Shimizu, who once had a relationship with Jolie (who costarred with her in the 1996 film Foxfire), is engaged to her partner Michelle Harper.

Jolie is quoted as saying of Shimizu: "I fell in love with her the first second I saw her. I would probably have married Jenny if I hadn't married my [first] husband."

Shimizu also lists Madonna as one of her former lovers.

Here's one for the weekend.

Ukraine-based synthpop dance group Kazaky has released their latest throbber entitled "Pulse".

They're back to busting out their distinct dance style topless in their signature stilettos (which has become a thing in gay dance culture), along with fetishwear and police gear.

One member is missing (again), so they're down to a trio in this outing.

The Vancouver International Airport was recently named the most efficient airport in Canada. But does it have the best washrooms in the nation?

It's in the running for that honour, as it's been named one of the five finalist nominees in the fifth annual Canada's Best Restroom Contest.

It'll be competing against washrooms at the Calgary Zoo, Niagara Falls' Planet Hollywood, Niagara on the Lake's Shaw Club Hotel and Spa, and Toronto's Patria restaurant.

The contest describes the YVR washroom thusly:

The weather forecast looks a bit rainy this weekend.

That's ostensibly why the Fair at the PNE is offering free admission on Saturday and Sunday (August 30 and 31) if you get there by 1 p.m.

A PNE news release states:

The infamous Toronto-based website Ashley Madison, designed to help married people hook up with others, is launching a lawsuit against the South Korean government for blocking it in that country.

The Korean site of Ashley Madison was launched on April 1 but was shut down on April 16 by the Korean Communications Standards Commission.

Authorities accused the website of encouraging immorality. Adultery is illegal in South Korea.

It’s a beautiful show this flower is putting on in an East Vancouver back alley—a limited run in fact that probably closes in a matter of days or weeks.

The intended audience however was nowhere to be seen. It’s certainly wasn’t me—it was bees!

Everything you see (and a lot of things you can’t) is designed to entice bees to spend some quality time deep in this booming flower. It’s the purest kind of sex appeal. The flower is appealing to the bee so the flower can reproduce.

Will pollinate for food

Flowers have two things bees want and need: pollen and nectar.

Summer doesn't officially end until September 21, but for many of us, it's really over by Labour Day.

That's because on the following day, classes resume in colleges and universities (if not in the K-12 system).

If you're looking for something to do this weekend, here are five choices:

Earlier this week, TransLink added painted queue lines to the 99 B-Line's westbound stop at Commercial-Broadway Station. The markings encourage orderly lineups while clearing space for wheelchairs, exiting bus riders, and passersby. 

On Thursday afternoon (August 28), I got a quick look at them before hopping on the bus. As you can see, it wasn't busy enough to assess the efficacy of the "pilot queuing system".

But it got me wondering whether this should be the start of a trend. Are there other places in our transit system where we need to be told where (not) to wait?