June 14th, 2016 — A total of 34 trees were cut down in front of this apartment building at the corner of 23rd and Bellevue in West Vancouver despite a bylaw having been passed in April prohibiting such actions.
June 3rd, 2016 — Muhammad Ali died today aged 74. In 1972, during the time he was officially banned from boxing after refusing to be drafted into the army during the Viet Nam war, he put on exhibition fights around the US and Canada including far out of the way Edmonton. It was different era. There was only a small entourage around him and because the press were by then friendly, for an hour or so the day before the fight me and a reporter hung out with Ali in his hotel room with Angelo Dundee, the referee, and a few others connected with the fight. Pictures from the fight can be seen in the “Boxing, the forgotten sport” collection by clicking on the picture above. The pictures of him in his hotel room unfortunately were lost long ago in the files of the Edmonton Journal.
June 2nd, 2016 — Today the last remnants of the Vancouver Province newspaper, 20 or so reporters and editors, move in with the last remnants of the Vancouver Sun to form a combined newsroom. I hope the Sun survives the invasion. It’s not generally known but Sun reporters and deskers have always been kind of meek, or in the least, fearful of authority, especially of their editors, except of course, Kim Bolan. Province reporters and deskers treated editors with a certain amount of contempt and didn’t take the trouble to hide it. Take, for example, the desk of reporter Jack Keating, above. Not only was it a slovenly disgrace to the newsroom it was in full view of management’s offices and probably a fire hazard, but no editor got Jack to clean it up. A small item I know but a symbol. I recall when Michael Cooke arrived from the Edmonton Journal to be editor in chief. Neil Graham the managing editor, who had hoped to get the job himself, told me that management would humour Michael for a few months then give him to Wendy Fitzgibbons to play with. That one didn’t quite work out as planned but it did show that editors at the Province knew we weren’t to be pushed around. For those who don’t know who Wendy Fitzgibbons is I could tell you that she was a shop steward, or that she once got into a nose to nose screaming match on deadline with another desker about the merits of Province style versus CP style, but it wouldn’t really convey the essence of Wendy. She was just, Wendy. But I digress from the point I wanted to make about the above picture in that it is, as I said earlier, a symbol of what the Province newsroom and its people were like, messy, chaotic, and cantankerous, and I hope the Province staffers carry that with them to the Sun.
May 30th, 2016 — Kite surfing off Nexen Beach in Squamish.