Our year-in-review special looks back at the wacky, weird, and wondrous stories of 2013.
DYING TO HELP
In February, the B.C. government auctioned off a special out-of-season hunting permit to kill a wild mountain sheep. The successful anonymous bidder paid US$275,000 at an auction in Reno, Nevada, and the proceeds go to the provincial nonprofit Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation.
“I’m nervous. My heart is kind of in my throat a bit.”—Harbour Publishing cofounder Howard White on the occasion, last February, of acquiring long-time prominent Vancouver publisher Douglas and McIntyre, which had filed for bankruptcy four months previous
Richmond’s Yaohan Centre shopping mall, a 22,000-square-foot facility with 78 stores that caters mainly to shoppers of Asian descent, was evacuated in January after a customer called 911 and reported a gas leak. The malodorous source eventually was found to be a supermarket’s produce section, which had just stocked fresh durian, a large and notoriously smelly Southeast Asian fruit.
FART JOKES RULE
“Vancouver crowds are smart, they’re sophisticated.…It’s funny, I’ll ask the nicest, most polite people what show they want tickets for and they always go for the naughty show.”—Former comedy-festival artistic director Will Davis, talking to the Globe and Mail, serves up a seeming contradiction about Vancouver comedy fans
“There is a lot of conversation worldwide and a lot of pressure on governments to look at softening the drug laws. But the Conservatives, that goes against everything they want to do.”—Jodie Emery, wife of jailed Canadian marijuana activist Marc Emery, to Yahoo News about one of the reasons he may still be sitting in a U.S. prison even after the Americans approved a transfer request earlier this year so he can serve out his remaining time in a Canadian jail
ONE SIZE FITS ALL
“Well, you know, affordable housing is something that somebody can afford.”—Vancouver city councillor Kerry Jang to radio host Simi Sara after being asked to define affordable housing. When asked by the Straight how Vancouver’s sky-high market-rental rates could even be considered affordable, Jang replied: “Well, it’s affordable for those who can’t afford to buy a home”
AFTER THE FUR FLIES
“I needed some time to lick my wounds.”—New NDP MLA Jane Shin (Burnaby-Lougheed), the party’s first Korean-born candidate, on why she disappeared before the election after the B.C. Liberals revealed that she had once typed a racial slur in her Internet gambling chat 11 years previous, as well as accusing her of misrepresenting her medical credentials
GLEEKS FOR KIDS
“To be part of his legacy is bittersweet.”—Maureen Webb, a founder of Vancouver’s Project Limelight (which builds Downtown Eastside kids’ self-esteem through the performing arts) and a friend of recently deceased Glee TV star and Victoria resident Cory Monteith, after news that Fox Television would donate all download proceeds from the Glee Monteith tribute episode to the charity