Monday, February 16, 2009



For a guy who claims to know all or much about drug addiction, I didn't really know until today who were the original authors of that spurious document called The Vancouver Agreement.

This thing - which has accomplished just about nothing since its inception almost nine years ago - has long been held in mysterious high regard as the Bible and Koran of urban renewal for the DTES.

Today, reading a very good item by Robert Matas in the Globe, I learn that the original signatories to this high-sounding, low-landing fluff were Philip Owen, then Mayor of Vancouver, Hedy Fry and Jenny Kwan.

'nuff said?

At the time, Fry was unbelievably a federal Liberal cabinet minister and Kwan was a Provincial NDP cabinet minister.

Owen is the only one of the three who, in spite of too often being on the wrong track, was really serious and dedicated about cleaning up the mess and he has continued in his way to try to find improvements.

But he is clearly as frustrated as the rest of us these days.

Recently he tried to engage the federal government.

"But Mr. Owen said he got nowhere. He could not even persuade the federal government to contribute $200,000 to a new drug-treatment centre for boys and girls that opened earlier this year, despite Conservative Party campaign promises to support treatment and prevention over harm reduction."


Mark O'Meara, one of the best friends of Tiger Woods says that he has been hitting a few balls with Tiger of late.

Tiger has been off his feet after surgery. This was immediately after winning his last major while hobbling about in pain. He may resume play shortly.

O'Meara says that Tiger is looking better than ever.


Tiger is one of those once-in-a-lifetime performers - say, like a Pavarotti - that brings people who have never looked at a golf ball or listened to an opera to not only watch and listen but to become raving fans.

For the sponsors, tournament organizers, broadcasters, writers and Tiger nuts - like me - this is exciting news.

For the other guys with expensive sticks in their hands...


Women in Iran?

Try this thoughtful op-ed piece in this morning's NY Times from Roger Cohen.

The mountain tells all.