Best of Vancouver 2012 contributors' picks: Sports
For the Georgia Straight’s 17th annual Best of Vancouver issue, our editorial team has spent months on the lookout for good deeds, weird urban details, and various howlers to highlight. Here’s our contributors’ picks for Best of Vancouver 2012.
Best things that will come out of the NHL lockout
The discovery that there are other foods than chicken wings, other things to do on a Saturday night than watch TV, and other strangers’ lives to be interested in than those of millionaires in matching blue-and-green costumes. Think of the classic books you’ll read, the musical instruments you’ll finally learn how to play, the delightful country strolls you’ll take, the puppies and kittens you’ll pat on the head, the charity work you’ll do, the liver cells you’ll save. But better get on it: quicker than you can say “negotiated settlement regarding the role of escrow payments in league revenue-sharing”, the NHL owners and the players’ union will stop bickering and start the season, and we’ll all climb right back into that warm, stupefying mental bath.
Best Whitecaps holdover from Swangard Stadium and Empire Field
The Southsiders—so named because of the compass point they occupied as they cheered on the team and razzed opposing ’keepers at Swangard Stadium, their first home—are instantly identifiable at any Vancouver Whitecaps FC game. That’s not because the colourful members of the soccer team’s unofficial fan club have always been bunched together, whether it was standing on the track at Swangard, seated temporarily at Empire Field (on the south side, again), or in their reserved section in the ’Caps’ new MLS digs at B.C. Place Stadium. And it’s not even because they all wear team-colours scarves, hats, and jerseys and wave signs, flags, and banners. No, it’s because of the noise: songs, chants, ditties, salty suggestions, and the sporadic helpful hint directed at the on-field officials. Some of the bellows and verses are for specific points during the game; some are directed at certain players (or managers); and some are dictated by the play on the pitch. All of them will bring a smile to your face (and the occasional hands over the ears of nearby impressionable wee ones). Best of all, no matter how the lads are faring on the field or in the standings, the Southsiders’ support never flags.