About as much as Vancouver needs more coffee or sushi shops, the dreaded, locally made Ultra Rich Asian Girls series debuted online on October 26.

A mashup riff of the book Crazy Rich Asians and the Real Housewives franchise, the series promised to provide a peek into the lavish lifestyles of the rich and Asian—for no apparent reason. That, in addition to an anticipated unhealthy serving of misogyny and racism, of course, much to the delight of covert bigots across town.

Criticism immediately sprang up in reaction to teasers about the controversial show, with fears of racial stereotyping fuelling latent interracial tensions and more of the catty trashfest otherwise known as the Real Housewives of Vancouver.

Months ago I photographed the cutest little house—the kind you just want to hug. I didn’t realize at the time it was also home to one of the great former talents of our age.

I found the sight of the great clown-comedian—little more than skin and bones—almost shocking. The years had not been kind.

Relaxing on his veranda, surrounded by some of his famous props, he looked more like a macabre Halloween display than a former star of stage and screen.

Advice to young clowns—don’t grow old

He’s all but forgotten now, having retired decades ago. But despite a life of hard-drinking, carousing and skydiving, he lives on.

Couldn't make it out last night? You missed perfectly minimalist duo the Kills at the Commodore. Sarah Jules was there and caught a moment of the show on Instagram. Here’s your concert pic of the morning. The Kills at the Commodore Ballroom on October 26, 2014. Thanks Sarah.

After seemingly every debate and press conference, Vision Vancouver and the NPA rush to put out news releases attacking each other's "secret deals" and "rookie mistakes".

They also post YouTube videos highlighting moments that they think will portray their opponents in the poorest light.

Above is the latest such clip featuring mayoral incumbent Gregor Robertson, which comes courtesy of the NPA from the mayoral debate on Sunday (October 26).

Halloween week started two minutes before 8 p.m. on Sunday evening. That’s when the 1400 block of West Broadway was host to an impromptu and quite brief fireworks show.

The flashes and bangs emanating from the alley on the north side of the street were all bang and no flash to begin with as nothing rose higher than the one- and two-storey buildings.

Once they got going though, the fireworks easily topped four storeys.

It was a nice little show.

To whomever was behind the spectacle, the sprinkle of people waiting for the number 9 bus particularly enjoyed it and thank you very much. 

Thirty years ago today—on October 26, 1984—Ian Lloyd played the old Georgia Street party palace known as Outlaws. He was performing with his new band, Fast Forward, and doing tunes from their first (and only) album, Living in Fiction.

But more importantly, Lloyd was the funky-voiced guy who sang that awesome 1973 tune "Brother Louie". You may have heard it more recently as the theme for Louie CK's TV show, Louie.

It's the only song I can think of that has a lead guitar vs. strings battle.

I interviewed Lloyd at a local hotel way back when in advance of the Outlaws gig. For all you dozens of hardcore Ian Lloyd fans out there, here's the story as it appeared in the Oct. 26-Nov. 2 issue of the Straight

A day before Jian Ghomeshi took a leave of absence from the CBC Radio show Q, he delivered a lengthy commentary on last week's shootings in Ottawa that took the lives of Cpl. Nathan Cirillo and gunman Michael Zehaf-Bibeau.

You can hear Ghomeshi's editorial in the video above.

Today, CBC announced that it had parted ways with Ghomeshi, who cofounded Q in 2007.

He has since declared that his dismissal was linked to the public broadcaster's fears that aspects of his sex life would be made public.

The NPA's mayoral candidate, Kirk LaPointe, continues coming under fire from Vision Vancouver over a potential Broadway subway line.

Late last week, the city's governing party released the video above, which shows LaPointe refusing to respond to a question from journalist Frances Bula.

Bula started by asking LaPointe why he keeps blaming Mayor Gregor Robertson for proposing a carbon tax to pay for transit when, according to her, the idea is being pushed hardest by Surrey mayor Dianne Watts.

Bula also claimed that LaPointe was blaming Robertson for a 10-year transit plan supported by various mayors.

"Why do you make it sound like he's the only person who thought of this?" Bula asked.

Twenty-five years ago last Tuesday—on October 21, 1989—the Tragically Hip played the second of two shows at the 86 Street Music Hall, touring behind its then-new album, Up to Here. That's the one with "Blow at High Dough", "New Orleans is Sinking", and "38 Years Old". You know that one.

I don't remember the show—although I'm sure I went, seeing as they were one of my fave bands back then. But I do recall interviewing Hip vocalist Gordon Downie, who was 25 years old at the time. It was the first article I did on the Hip, though far from the last.

Here's the story that ran in the Straight the week before the gig. 

It’s autumn and the wasps are sick…and…tired…of…living.

When yellow jacket wasps appear in the spring they are immature and tentative young things—a bit slow off the mark but still quick to become the perfect little killing machines they are born to bee, oops, I mean be.

Yellow jackets aren’t bees. Aside from the yellow and black colouration they don’t even look like bees. And they don’t collect honey, they collect kills.

Wasps: the enemy of your enemy

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