The Vancouver Scrum

On the move!

Agh! You’re still here? My new site and weblog, is now up and running; new posts are building up over there, never to be mirrored here. Go! What are you waiting for? All the stuff worth keeping has been migrated over to the new server, and I don’t anticipate making any more posts here.

Bloggers and webmasters: Update your links! Simply replace with in your blogrolls or bookmarks to point to the new site. Old posts will remain on this server for as long as the people at Blogger/Google allow them to remain; unfortunately, I’m not going to bother to come up with any way of converting permalinks on this blog to their corresponding posts on the new site. Yes, I plead laziness. I also realize the irony of switching away from Blogger just it starts to add features that the demanding blog nerds insist upon.

Thanks for reading and linking, and see you over at!

—Ian King, December 13, 2004

Sunday, December 21, 2003


Tyee: Unspinning the year's news

Your humble host offers a brief summary of the year that was in British Columbia's media world. Rafe fights back, the other Black gets bigger, Straight claims conspiracy, CanWest defends one Campbell (and tries to take the boots to the other one), etc. Read the rest of it.

Right now, my columns for the Tyee go under the name "Scrum Filter." I'm trying to come up with something a bit snappier. If you've got suggestions, email me or leave your ideas in the comment box.

More whorin', less borin'

Well, that's what I hope. I'll be on Vancouver's 600AM Monday morning from 9:04 to 9:30 AM PST, talking about the Vancouver media and whatnot with Shiral Tobin, who's subbing for Rafe Mair, the dean of the B.C. commentariat. If you're not in or near Vancouver, you can listen to the show here (Windows Media only; sorry, Linux users.) Go ahead, call in and offer softball questions and obseqious adulation. On the other hand, perhaps you'd rather knock me down to size. Either way, here's your chance to do it with 50,000 people listening.

If you who miss the original broadcast, AM600 archives broacasts for roughly three weeks following the original air date. Just head to the Rafe Mair archive page and select "December 22, 2003"; then fast forward to about 30 minutes into the program. Easy as pie.

Thursday, December 11, 2003


For those who must know...

My statsbox has been showing that people have been coming to this blog in search of the picure of Houston, BC mayor Sharon Smith wearing nothing but her ceremonial chain of office. So, here you go, courtesy Britain's filthiest little rag, the Sun: The Lord Mayor's show!

In case you're wondering, Houston, BC is a small town of a little over 3500 people, located about halfway between Prince George and Prince Rupert on Highway 16. Industries are rumoured to include cutting wood and planting the trees that produce said product. Other than that, few people would give a rat's rear end about the place unless they were running low on gas and were unsure whether they could make it to Terrace without a pitstop,

Of course, we humble Canucks don't call our mayors something ostentatiously holy as "Lord Mayor." We simply prefer the supplicative "Your Worship." (As an aside, I once asked former Vancouver mayor Philip Owen if the proper way to address him was "Your Ex-Worship." He made an embarrassed laugh in that goofy way that Vancouverites are familiar with, then said something to the order of Philip being quite all right with him.)

Quick comment: More proof that that sort of stuff should not be stored on any computer that is connected to the Internet for any time whatsoever. Stick it on a CD-ROM and stash it in the safe deposit box and file it alongside with your political IOUs, safely away from any eyes but your own and perhaps those of nosy bank employees.

Further irrelevant thought. When current Vancouver mayor Larry Campbell wears both his chain and his clan's kilt, does he wear the kilt the way it should be worn?

The Tyee

For all 12 of you who bother with this sort of thing, I'll be doing two or so stories a month for The Tyee, the new "daily online news source for B.C." My first piece (a digest of old stuff from Terminal City, actually) is now up on the web site in the oh-so-coveted top position. For the really curious, there's more biographical information on me in editor David Beers's notes than there is on this entire web log -- all 16 months of it.

Monday, December 01, 2003


Google Search: worst blog in the world

Why am I not surprised that the number one Google result for worst blog in the world is, well, the worst blog in the world. For those of you not in on the joke, I'm talking about the supposedly spontaneous blog of Paul Martin, He Who Will Be Prime Minister Real Soon Now. Martin's blog has been update all of once sine he locked up an obscene number of delegates who voted in the Liberal Party's latest leader. Hell, there wasn't even a posting about how he enjoyed the Liberal coronation convention last month, nor anything about basking in the glow of imminent power or anything equally cheesy. Oh yeah -- Martin's postings, if he actually reviews them before they go up, are obviously phonier than hell. Enough reason for a lot of other blogs to dub the dishonorific on the PM-to-be. One more claim to fame for the guy who will be my Prime Minister in less than two days. We at the Scrum will now script the inevitable, well, scrum...

HACK #1: Prime Minister, are you aware that your web log is the first result that one finds when typing 'worst blog in the world' into Google?

PM PM: My what? Into what?

HACK #1: Your web log, or blog, Mr. Martin. It's that web page that your campaign set up in order to make you seem more hip, techno-literate, and with it.

PM PM: Oh, that! What was that other thing that you were talking about -- Goombah?

HACK #2: Google, Prime Minister. It's by far the most popular search engine on the web. People type words and terms that they want to find on the Internet, and it responds with a list of pages. In your care, when people look for the worst blog in the world, the first thing that they see is your site.

PM PM: What the fuck?!?? How do I get this googol to change this? ROBINSON! Get yer ass over here, pronto!

HACK #2: You can't. Google bases its page rankings on links to your site. Seems that a lot of people writing about lousy weblogs are using yours as an example.

PM PM: ROBINSON! Can we pass a law against this crap?

MIKE ROBINSON, TRUSTED ADVISOR TO PAUL MARTIN: No, sir, they're in the United States.

PM PM: Can we pay them to change the rankings?


HACK #1: Sorry, Mr. Martin. Google is rumoured to be valued at $15-billion in their upcoming IPO, and people trust Google because you can't buy your way to the top of the rankings -- or out of them, for that matter. If they band for you, their business goes down the tubes. So what are you going to do about it?

PM PM: Robinson! Get one of those little shits that we suckered into selling memberships to those college kids to start tapping up whatever my views are supposed to be today! Get them on it, now!

HACK #3: Sir, do you regard your campaign workers as 'little shits?'

HACK #2: Prime Minister, did your workers even consult with you about what was to be put on your web log?

PM PM: Oh, crap.

HACK #4: Mr. Martin, are you indeed admitting that your online musings are in fact not those of your own? Do you even know what was posted on your site?

PM PM: I have a meeting to get to.

(Prime Minister runs up steps, begins panting heavily, forced to pause.)

HACK #3: Looks like you should have spent more time on the Stairmaster, PM PM!

PM PM: (wheeze...)

(No journalists, politicians, or political advisors were harmed in the making of this posting. Any resemblance to the way things unfold, if they ever do, would be mildly amusing.)

Reports, opinions, columns, and anything else on this site, are © 2002-2003 Ian King unless otherwise noted. Permission granted to use material on this site for non-commercial purposes provided that the work is attributed to the original author. All other uses require specific permission of the original author. Contact weblog owner with any inquiries.

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