Best of Vancouver 2007
All over the city, laps are being dented, arms stretched to breaking, with this, the Georgia Straight’s 12th annual Best of Vancouver issue. It’s a monster, all right: it’s our biggest issue ever.
It’s a good time to reach for the definitive. It feels like the eyes of the world are on us these days, and not just because of the possible disaster in the making that is the Olympic Games. From as far away as Toronto (never far from our darkest thoughts), we’ve been roundly mocked for a summer that never was, a strike that seems unending, and our ongoing (and expanding) obsession with calories, karma, and canines. True, some people love us. England’s Economist Intelligence Unit tapped Vancouver as the world’s most livable city only a few weeks ago (mostly because our crime rate could be worse), and, closer to home, findings just released by Prophis Research and Consulting tell us that 91 percent of Americans polled (out of a base of 1,000) have heard of Vancouver. They’ve heard of us! Of course, when questioned more closely, 23 percent associated us with cold, 18 percent knew we were in Canada, and six percent thought we were—pick one—clean, nice, and safe. Only four percent thought to name the Canucks, and only two percent mentioned the Olympics.
But what do we care what the foreigners think? We know we’re special. And this issue, as usual, proves it, documenting the best of life in our city, our (curiously renamed) regional district, and our province. The contributors listed here have submitted their thoughts and opinions to enlighten and enrage, but they’re not the only ones sharing; throughout the coming pages, you’ll find boxes listing the various winners as chosen by you, our tireless readers.
It’s a good thing you’ve got stamina. The ballot for this year’s readers’ poll was also immense, with a whopping 214 questions. True, you didn’t have to answer them all (very few tried, and we’d hardly expect many folks to have something genuine to say in every category), but still that’s a daunting array. Downright nosy, some might say. And yet, rather than being scared off, a record number of you responded. You people are gluttons for punishment, it seems. It’s hard to say what we’ll do next year to top it—if the ballot gets any longer, we may have to start bundling it with weekend camp-outs throughout the summer.
So thank you, everyone who logged on to our site and filled out 10, 20, 70, or 158 answers. You’ll find the cumulative responses of the populace on display throughout this immense special issue. And if by some chance you disagree, come to Straight.com and lodge your comments. We dare you.