Now You See It, Now You Don't.

At noon and 9 p.m. daily, a giant chandelier descends from under the Granville Bridge in Vancouver. It lights up, spins for two minutes, and tucks itself back into the underbelly of the bridge again.

Why?

Does art need a reason?

Designed by B.C. artist, Rodney Graham, the public art piece is almost eight metres high, and is made of stainless steel, LED lamps, and six hundred faux crystals.

The hefty price tag for the piece is raising some eyebrows—$4.8 million.

Does a city with dealing with skyrocketing real estate prices and the resultant housing crisis need a gigantic chandelier?

Does any city?

Yes. Any city. Every city.

We all need more in our lives than food and board. We need life in our life, fun in our day, and something spectacular just around the corner.

To the naysayers, might I point out that the city did not pay for this Phantom of the Opera installation. Obligated by a city bylaw to provide a public art piece as part of their Vancouver House project, Westbank, the property developer, commissioned and covered the cost of the chandelier.

Yes, the installment has stirred up controversy.

It has also become so popular, that another spin cycle has been added. The chandelier now whirls three times a day, at noon, at 4 p.m., and at 9 p.m.

Next time I’m in Vancouver, I’m taking a peek under the bridge 🙂

Aimer at Amazon

Michael

“No?” One hand sliding up Michael’s chest, Jared laughed. “Cute,” he said, thinking Michael was joking.

Michael shot a pointed look at the hand on his chest and tried to walk away, but Jared grabbed his shoulder and pushed him back against the wall, smiling because Michael was here for him. Obviously.

Michael didn’t struggle, but he didn’t have to, the look on his face enough to burst the alcoholic bubble Jared had been floating in. Shit. What was he doing? “Sorry.” He snatched his hand off Michael and buried it in his pocket, hiding the evidence. “Wasn’t thinking.”

“Yeah, you were.” Michael walked away from him, lost himself in the bodies clogging the main floor of the frat house.

Okay, he’d screwed up. Michael wasn’t into drunken asswipes pawing at him. Noted. Jared pushed his way through the crowd and out the front door, to see Michael heading back towards campus. He launched himself down the steps and onto the sidewalk, chasing after Michael.

Jared slowed to a walk at Michael’s side, and Michael ignored him. Okay, the guy was pissed. Jared could work with pissed. “You want me.”

Michael shrugged. “Not tonight, I don’t.”

A grin sliding across his face, Jared strolled at Michael’s side. “Tomorrow night?”

Aimer at Amazon

A Birthday to Remember

French or English, if you grew up in Quebec, you probably know Roch Carrier’s classic, The Hockey Sweater. Published in 1979, it’s the story of a boy forced to wear a Toronto Maple Leafs jersey in a small Quebec town that worships Les Canadiens. Anguish and horror ensue.

Fast forward to the tail end of 2019 and another gravely disappointed little boy. Jacob Bertrand refused to eat his birthday cake because instead of this:

A cake with his team’s logo on it.

He got this:

A cake with the logo of Maple Leaf Foods, a Canadian company that makes cold cuts.

Not the same thing at all. Not to Jacob, who in a family of Les Canadiens supporters, is a die-hard Maple Leaf fan.

While Roch’s story ends with the boy praying that moths would eat his jersey so he wouldn’t have to wear it anymore, Jacob’s story finishes on a much happier note.

Through social media, the Maple Leaf Foods company found out about the cake fiasco, and decided to do something about it. They sent Jacob and his family to a Maple Leafs game in Toronto.

Did Maple Leaf Foods get a lot of free press out of this? Yes.

They also gave Jacob a birthday to remember.

Aimer at Amazon