Wednesday, November 08, 2006

political party notes

Warehouse Election Central

Random notes from The Political Party Monday night...

* Arrived around 7:45 and the place was already packed...though I managed to snag a parking space directly across the street. The joys of running late.

* I've been to Revival twice before and couldn't believe how different the space looked with full lighting. Surprisingly bright.

* To indicate that time was up when answering a question, the TTC chimes were used. Some confuson was caused when a bicycle The only real abuse of this came during Jane Pitfield's last question, when she rambled on about crime in the city (summed up as people don't feel safe in the city because "crime is unpredictable").

* It was quickly clear that the house was pro-David Miller. It felt as if there were a few strategically-placed designated clappers for Pitfield, especially one near the front of the room, who at times literally was the only person clapping. Miller seemed more relaxed than his challenger, in dress, tone and speaking style.

* Despite pleas not to boo or show similar behaviour, a few items Pitfield brought up produced a few razzberries. The first boos came when she mentioned New York mayor Michael Bloomberg in relation to homeless issues (she also developed a slight stutter in trying not to say the word "ghetto", going as far as "ghe". A proposal to extend corporate naming into the subway system did not go down well.

* Most of the audience razzberries toward Miller came during a question on the street furniture contract and the much-loathed eucans, which he admitted were probably a mistake. One or two groans could be heard when he indicated tolls on the Gardiner and DVP weren't coming anytime soon (he made a good point that tollswouldn't drive people in outlying areas of the city to transit unless service was expanded).

* Odd tangent when Pitfield, replying to a question about trash, mentioned her close ties to the aboriginal community. When a snicker was heard in the crowd, she discussed her work with them and how they needed to be "lifted up".

* A recurring villain was councillor Case Ootes and his opposition to bike lanes in his ward, especially the existing one on Cosburn. While she didn't mention Ootes by name, Pitfield made a nice slam dunk of his obstructions of the city bike plan.

* Other takes on the evening: Campaign Bubble, Funkaoshi, Spacing Votes, Toronto Star

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